Authority plans GIS system to improve air quality, address environmental concerns
In a bid to improve air quality and analyse ecological concerns in the city, the Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority is working on an environmental and climate monitoring system for micro-level monitoring and better policymaking, officials familiar with the matter said. The system will be deployed in Gurugram and Faridabad and will employ geographical information system (GIS) technology.
The GIS technology is a framework for gathering, managing, and analysing data that organises layers of information into visualisations using maps and 3D projections. A network of approximately 200 monitors is likely to be set up by the GMDA for this purpose.
Sultan Singh, chief geospatial officer and head of the GIS division for GMDA, said that a system will be worked out to monitor the environment of Gurugram and Faridabad. “We have different data, forecasts to monitor the environment, but the source of this data (meteorological station) is not always close to the specific location, giving us an average and not complete accuracy. So, GMDA is planning to set up appropriate infrastructure like automatic weather monitoring systems, air quality monitoring stations, meteorological stations across Gurugram and Faridabad, based on which micro-level monitoring can be done, leading to better policymaking for the fight against pollution,” said Singh.
The agenda for GMDA’s 8th authority meeting, held on April 9, stated, “The GIS applications can be used for modelling water harvesting sites and their selection based on topography with the implementation of new technologies like a continuous dense network of weather stations for effective management of water resources and also for measuring temperature, wind speed, air quality and pollution level. This will help in identifying the areas with less pollution or higher pollution. The reasons may then be identified for pollution and make proper plan for improvement. This will enable the participation of authority and citizens for making the environment better.”
The new monitoring systems will be installed after a study of the existing infrastructure and areas where devices are required. Singh said that the number of weather stations in the Gurugram-Faridabad region would be revealed after the survey. Haryana has a total of 14 meteorological centres set up by the India Meteorological Department, located at least 100 kilometres from one another.
A senior official of the GMDA, requesting anonymity, said that weather monitoring systems will be installed in grids of 9-10kms under the project. “With monitoring systems in close proximity, we will be able to closely monitor aspects like air quality, humidity, level of pollution. This will further help us in understanding why a particular area is reporting high levels of pollution or if certain areas are doing good work. Over 200 monitoring systems are likely to be installed as part of the project, but it is still being decided as to when work on the ground will start,” said the official.