Citizens of the state could probably breathe easy from next year with MP Pollution Control Board deciding to undertake round the clock online monitoring of emissions by major industries in the state to keep a check on probable air pollution.
More interestingly, auto-generated SMS would be used to warn the industries where emission levels are found to exceed air pollution norms.
By 2013, all the major industries in the state-mainly the cement, power, steel and pharmaceutical industries-would be required to install the kind of emission monitors at their plants that could be linked online to the MPPCB server in Bhopal and the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) master database server in New Delhi.
This way, both the state and the central boards would be able to maintain constant vigil on the emission levels of the industries and take suitable action in case the levels exceed the set norms.
"Whenever emission levels cross a particular limit, an automatic SMS would be generated and the defaulter industry would get warned to control the emissions. If this does not work, the board would resort to other actions like serving notice of warning and closure to the industries," chairman of the MPPCB, NP Shukla told HT.
The chairman said in the first phase, the online emission monitoring would be implemented on the cement and thermal power plants in the state, considered the most possible polluters.
The steel and pharmaceutical industries would be taken up in the next phase.
"However, the monitoring system would be totally in place by 2013,"Shukla said.
While the industries have already started replacing the emission monitoring equipments to have provisions of online linkage, the MPPCB is in the process of installing the required software needed for the linking.
"At present, we monitor the emission levels of the industries only quarterly and then undertake the process of warning and serving notices to the violators. With 24-hour constant vigil, the monitoring would be far more effective and industries would become more alert towards controlling emission levels," the chairman said.
The MPPCB initiative would be similar to a pilot project of CPCB undertaken in New Delhi to test the efficacy of the online transmission of real-time emission data from a power plant.
With the online linking, emission data of the power plant was updated and displayed on CPCB server every hour without any human interference.
The values of emissions were automatically compared with prescribed standards and violations were displayed for immediate attention of the authorities.
The system also has provision for analysing of available data for other needs.