?Air pollution four times above norms?
GETTING THAT choking feeling? Don’t blame it on the myriad-hued gulal particles that have been swirling on air currents since Holi. Dangerously high levels of suspended particulate matter (SPM) have become a perennial feature in Indore.
Particularly in the crowded, congested western part of the City that forms the hub of trading and mercantile activity. A recent study by the MP Pollution Control Board, Indore, revealed SPM levels to be 3-4 times higher than the permissible limit of 200 ug per cubic metre at all 12 sample survey locations.
The study results were reproduced by the Indore Municipal Corporation (IMC) in a booklet on its garden beautification programme that was released by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan during his visit to the City.
According to the survey, Rajwada, Corporation Square, Kothari Market and Regal Square score the dubious distinction of topping both respirable dust and SPM levels, recording 789.07, 806.87 775.20 and 886.70 ug/m3 respectively. Or nearly four times above prescribed limits.
Palika Square at 962.14 registered the lowest particulate matter levels. Surprisingly, the ultra-busy Palasia roundabout came a close second with 150.70 ug/m3 even though the readings were taken during the evening rush hour.
In all, 12 locations were selected at random for studying ambient air pollution levels. PCB officials recorded SPM and respirable dust levels at the short-listed locations for periods varying from 85 to 244 minutes in the morning as well as during the afternoon.
Readings for Rajwada, Kothari Market, Corporation Square, Bambai Bazaar and other commercial areas were taken in the evening while SPM levels were recorded in the morning at Regal Square, Palika Square, Gurudwara Imli Sahib, Siyaganj Square and Patel Chowk. At Palasia, particulate matter readings were taken at morning, noon and also in the evening.