While the pollution levels came down during the lockdown, a new study by IQAir Visual and Greenpeace Southeast Asia that has tracked air pollution level from January to June, revealed that air pollution in Bengaluru is linked to the loss of an estimated 6,300 lives and 3.7% of Bengaluru’s total annual GDP in the first half of 2020, despite a strict COVID-related lockdown.
While some cities saw temporary return of blue skies as a result of quarantine restrictions, these gains were reversed as soon as lockdowns ended.
Other Indian cities expected to lose a significant amount of GDP and human lives includes Delhi, Hyderabad, Patna, Mumbai, Lucknow and Chennai.
“As governments look to rebuild economies, it is more important than ever that investments are directed towards green, just and sustainable sectors of society. Rather than providing a last lifeline to the fossil fuel industry, we must invest in more economically viable solutions like renewable energy and clean powered public transport systems that also help the less privileged in the society. Now is the time for a rapid shift away from polluting fossil fuels, for our health, community, and for our economies,” said Avinash Chanchal, climate campaigner at Greenpeace India.
A senior official in the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) stated that between January and March, even their equipments recorded high pollution levels in Jayanagar, Silk board and city railway station.
"During the lockdown the vehicular movement was less hence the pollution level had dipped but in the Unlock situation we are again witnessing high pollution levels in areas surrounding NIMHANS, Jaynagar and Silk board. The other reason is the resumption of construction work as well," the official said....