Mumbai 37th most polluted city in India: Greenpeace Report
Air quality levels in cities within the Mumbai Metropolitan Region – like Dombivli, Chandrapur, Ulhasnagar, Thane, Navi Mumbai and Bhiwandi – were found to be higher than the national and WHO standards.
Mumbai was ranked the 37th most polluted city in India, in 2018, according to a report presented on Tuesday by Greenpeace India. The non-governmental organisation has published the Airpocalypse-IV report, which analysed annual average air pollution data from 2013 to 2018 for 287 Indian cities. These cities had reported more than 52 monitoring days’ data in 2018 during which air pollution exceeded the national ambient air quality safety standards of 60 microgrammes per cubic metre (µg/m3) for the concentration of PM10 (particles less than 10 microns suspended in the air, which can cause ailments).
Airpocalypse-IV reported that in 2018, the two most polluted cities in India were Jharia and Dhanbad. Noida and Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh ranked third and fourth respectively. Delhi ranked 10; Patna, 19; and Jaipur, 34. Mumbai was more polluted than several north Indian cities and at 37, it was the most polluted coastal city in Greenpeace’s list. The city reported PM10 levels at 162µg/m3 for 2018, which is three times the national ambient air quality safety standard and eight times the international standard (20µg/m3) identified by the World Health Organization (WHO).
“Even though Mumbai’s action plan has been implemented, definitive overall percentage reduction target for particulate matter till 2024 is missing,” said Avinash Chanchal, senior campaigner, Greenpeace India. “The plans also missed out on interim targets for sector-wise emission reduction, diesel and coal consumption caps, etc.”
Air quality levels in cities within the Mumbai Metropolitan Region – like Dombivli, Chandrapur, Ulhasnagar, Thane, Navi Mumbai and Bhiwandi – were higher than the national and WHO standards. Pune, Amravati, Nagpur, Jalna, Latur, Kolhapur, Pimpri, Chinchwad, Nashik, Sangli, Jalgaon, Akola, Solapur, and Aurangabad also had pollution levels above national ambient standards, and five to eight times higher than WHO standards, the report said.
Under the Centre’s National Clean Air Programme (NCAP), the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) has prepared action plans for 18 cities to reduce air pollution levels by 20-30% by 2024. “However, Airpocalypse-IV shows the Centre has included only 102 of 122 identified non-attainment cities under NCAP,” said Chanchal, and pointed out that Dombivli and Bhiwandi were not part of NCAP.
MPCB said several efforts had been implemented in 2019 to reduce particulate matter and their concentration levels were expected to come down by 10% across all non-attainment cities in the state. “Data for Mumbai in 2018 is based on only two monitoring stations – Sion and Bandra. In 2019, we have another 13 stations in the Mumbai region,” said a senior MPCB official.