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Wednesday, Nov 20, 2019

Construction, garbage burning and unpaved dusty roads are top polluters in Delhi

cities Updated: Oct 18, 2019 21:44 IST

New Delhi: Construction activities, garbage dumping and burning and unpaved dusty roads are the major sources of air pollution in Delhi, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) observed from the field monitoring carried out this month.

CPCB officials Friday said 46 teams have been monitoring pollution hotspots in Delhi and the neighbouring cities of Ghaziabad, Noida, Gurugram, Faridabad, Sonepat, Meerut and Rohtak to check violations of the graded response action plan (Grap).

The Grap, drawn up in 2017, defines specific measures to tackle different levels of air pollution through the year.

“Until October 17, we have lodged 689 complaints. These teams have been patrolling pollution hotspots night and day,” a senior CPCB official said.

During the field visits, the CPCB team found that construction and demolition activities, garbage dumping and burning, unpaved roads and road dust from vehicular movement were the prime sources of pollution in Delhi.

“Not just in Delhi, we also observed trends in neighbouring states. In Meerut, road dust and garbage dumping were the prominent pollution sources, while in Sonepat, industrial waste dumping and construction activity were the main culprits. In Rohtak, construction activity and road dust were found to be the top pollution contributors,” the CPCB official said.

The officials, however, clarified that the list does not include vehicular emissions.

Records also show that most number of pollution-related complaints were received from the northeast, northwest, east and west districts of Delhi. Among the satellite towns of Delhi, Noida and South Gurugram recorded the most number of pollution-related complaints.

Data presented by the CPCB also showed how crop stubble burning in the neighbouring states of Punjab and Haryana affected Delhi’s air.

From September 25 — when the harvest of early varieties of crops began in these states— till October 17 this year, 1,631 cases of stubble burning were reported in Punjab. There was a rise this year, compared to 1,198 cases of farm fires reported during the same period last year.

In Haryana, there was a minor dip in stubble burning cases, with 1,571 cases reported till October 17 this year, against 1,346 cases during the same period last year.

Data shows that in Punjab, the districts that had the most number of farm fires were Amritsar (452), Tarn Taran (346) and Patiala (180). In Haryana, Karnal registered the most number of such cases (404), followed by Kaithal (323) and Kurukshetra (284).

“Our teams are monitoring each of the pollution hotspots day and night. We all need to join hands and coordinate efforts to bring down pollution in Delhi,” CPCB member secretary Prashant Gargava said Friday