Hyderabad: Environmentalists want more stations of the Pollution Control Board to monitor the city’s air quality. This is important as tabs need to be kept on pollution as the city expands.
Mr Jeevanand Reddy, an environmental expert, said, “There is a need for establishing a few new stations as Hyderabad is expanding rapidly. The PCB should verify new areas of pollution and places where there is a concentration of vehicles.
He said government conveniently blames everything that goes wrong on global warming. The ministers are not bothered about the future, he said.
Hyderabad has crossed two parameters out of the 12 which was given by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to measure pollution.
The city is exposed to particulate matter (PM) in small sizes, less than 10 microns and less than 2.5 microns. the PM10 level should be less than 60 micrograms in one cubic metre of air but the city is nearing 90 micrograms. PM2.5 levels stand at 46 micrograms against the safety cut-off of 40 micrograms.
The PCB is monitoring air pollution with 21 manual stations and six continuous ambient air quality stations. It collects 104 samples from the manual stations every year, based on the guidelines of the CPCB. The stations are located at industrial, commercial and residential areas.
When asked about the need for having more stations, a PCB scientist, said, “We have installed the station at Shameerpet 10 years ago. All the installations were done keeping in view the city’s expansion. If we instal more stations that doesn’t mean that the values will change. There will a negligible change in accuracy.”
He said the PCB’s 21 manual stations cost around Rs 1.2 lakh each and maintenance amounted to Rs 1 lakh per annum. “We have also set up seven continuous ambient air quality stations. We have installed one each in 2006 and 2007, three in 2011 and two in 2015. The equipment costs around Rs 1 crore each and maintenance is Rs 10 lakhs to `lakhs per annum. As of now we don’t need any new equipment.”...