Civic body’s ‘dust bags’ help clean up 75 tonnes of dust from Ghaziabad roadsUpdated: Oct 20, 2020, 22:18 IST
In its four-day dust-collection drive, Ghaziabad corporation has collected about 75,216 kg of dust in its ‘dust bags’.
On the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti, Ghaziabad municipal corporation provided at least 100 dust bags to each of its 100 residential wards. Cleaning staff were deployed in each ward with vehicles and tasked with collecting dust in the bag. According to the official records duly verified at its construction and demolition (C&D) plant, the corporation has so far received 12,536 dust bags each with 6kg dust.
The records showed that 2,647 dust bags were collected from Vasundhara zone, 3,123 from the city zone, 2,152 from Mohan Nagar zone, 2,349 from Vijay Nagar zone and another 2,265 from the Kavi Nagar zone.
“Overall, we have so far collected about 12536 dust bags with about 75 tonnes of dust lifted from various city roads through collection drives on October 2, 9, 16 and 23. Each of the bag was shifted to the C&D plant where proper entries of bags received from different zones was recorded after verification,” said MS Tanwar, Ghaziabad municipal commissioner. “In February/March next year, we will also start with green paving of roadsides with grass so that dust emission is considerably reduced. The collected dust is now being used for making mud bricks and other items.”
According to officials, the corporation maintains about 3200km of road network in Ghaziabad and includes lanes in localities, city roads and major roads.
Tanwar said that results from the four-day drive were “encouraging” and that now they will conduct the drive on Monday, Wednesday and Friday of ever week, while the RWAs have also been asked to pitch in on Saturdays.
“We will collect dust in our ward from Saturday as reducing polluted surroundings is a collective responsibility,” said SK Maheshwari, councillor of ward 94 of Surya Nagar.
The UP-pollution control board (UPPCB) officials said that they have no quantifiable percentage of contribution of dust to city’s air pollution. “But, the component of road dust and also dust from construction sites contributes majorly to PM10 levels which remain on higher side throughout the year,” said Utsav Sharma, regional officer of the UP pollution control board.
A recent study by UP pollution control board also found high levels of dust mass on 18 city roads and also found major proportion of dust particles up to 75 microns which have lesser tendency to settle down.
Medical experts said that the dust on roads, which may result due to unpaved roads, construction/demolition sites etc, contain PM10, PM5 and even PM2.5 pollutants.
“Out of these PM2.5 is a respirable material which has the highest potential to penetrate into the lungs while breathing. Entering through the airway, it can lead to nasal allergies, have long term effects in the lungs, like COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), fibrosis etc. Apart from the respiratory tract, eyes are the second vulnerable organs, and the dust may cause conjunctivitis, irritation and redness,” said Dr. Sharad Joshi, principal consultant (Pulmonology), Max Hospital at Vaishali.
“Dust particles that do not settle on the road are a huge contributor to air pollution. Not only that they increase breathlessness and asthmatic attacks in some people, it can affect the elderly and the new-born more. In times of Covid-19, particles around an infected person not wearing a mask can act as a carrier of the virus,” said Dr. Gyan Bharti, pulmonologist from Columbia Asia Hospital, Ghaziabad.