23% rise expected in PM2.5 emission sources by 2030 in Mumbai: Study

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Published on Aug 03, 2019 12:16 AM IST
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By, Mumbai

By 2030, the city will see a 23% rise in emission load (in tonnes) for fine particulate matter (PM2.5), according to the study.

Transport (9,450 tonnes) and industrial sectors (24,100 tonnes) were the primary contributors to PM2.5 particulate pollution emissions in 2018, while the total PM2.5 emission load was 49,600 tonnes in 2018 from various sources, an emission inventory study by air pollution research group UrbanEmissions.info released on Thursday said. It estimates the total emissions for PM2.5 to rise to 60,950 tonnes by 2030, if adequate solutions to tackle air pollution are not implemented.

Source-wise emissions for PM2.5 included 42% from the industrial sector from small, medium, and heavy industries (including power generation), 26% from transport emissions from road, rail, aviation, and shipping, 16% dust emissions from road re-suspension and construction activities, 5% each from open waste burning and diesel generator set emissions, 4% from trick kiln emissions (not included in the industrial emissions), and only 2% from residential emissions such as cooking, heating, and lighting activities.

Researchers said the predicted rise in emissions was due to constant increase is demand for infrastructure and limited action on control of pollution. “The gradual rise in emissions is due to a steady increase in population, quantum of waste generation, use of energy, use of transport, and construction demand,” said Sarath Guttikunda, lead author, founder and director, Urbanemissions.info. “The only sector which is showing a gradual decrease in the emissions is the household cooking and lighting due to a progressive push to make liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and electricity the primary energy source.”

“We need to aggressively promote public transport, para transport, walking, and cycling to address transport sector emissions. Secondly, with 100% efficiency in waste collection and disposal, waste burning can be controlled. Further, actively pursuing enforcement of emission regulations for heavy and light industry; and greening of cities are major solutions to reduce the 2030 forecast.”

Independent experts who were not a part of the study said the transport sector and industries form a significant part of Mumbai’s air pollution crisis. “In a scenario where air quality information is still scarce, this is a comprehensive and reliable compilation,” said Sunil Dahiya campaigner, Global Air Pollution unit, Greenpeace.

The MPCB said Mumbai’s air pollution action plan was focused on reduction of private vehicles with planned introduction of cleaner fuels, increasing public transport, reducing resuspension of windblown dust from construction and demolition waste, and distributing more LPG connections to slum areas. “Work on all these fronts has begun with all private and government stakeholders. Within the next two years, we expect significant improvement in overall air pollution situation,” said Sudhir Srivastava, chairman, MPCB.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Badri Chatterjee is an environment correspondent at Hindustan Times, Mumbai. He writes about environment issues - air, water and noise pollution, climate change - weather, wildlife - forests, marine and mangrove conservation

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