The pairing of winter climate with harsh air quality is always deadly. The kind of pair no one would want to encounter.The dreadful duo is bound to claim many lives this year.
A not so typical winter
India’s winter season has started. The temperatures range from -2 degrees C to 40 degrees C. The extremities can go low to -4 degrees C and high up to 47 degrees C. As it is winter now, there is lot less humidity in the air, in the tropical Indian climate. This low humidity already gives us cold sores,dry skin and easy flues. Now that our air pollution is also on the rise, this humid climate is combined with soot, dust, minute particulate matter and PM 2.5 pollutants, causing serious health hazards and giving us an even harder time.
The Northern States of India are comparatively much cooler than their Southern partners. And this time of the year, the agricultural residues that are burnt for new Rabi crops,add to the pollution. The intensity increases with vehicular exhaustion, constructional dust, Thermal Electricity generation techniques and general dirt on the roads.
State of Indian Pollution
The World Health Organisation has been monitoring the working of nations on various aspects. It has also set some parameters on the Air Quality of the nations. Even with certain relaxations on the number limits of the parameters, India surpasses them by a large extent. To such an extent that 9 out of 10 Top Polluted Cities in the World are of India. Put in a nutshell, the WHO’s study of over 4,000 cities across 100 countries, CNBC gives us a peek at the 10 most polluted cities in the world based on PM 2.5 amounts on an average. (PM 2.5- a particle so small it can enter our lungs through air, damaging them very seriously)
- Kanpur, UP
- Faridabad, Haryana
- Varanasi, UP
- Gaya, Bihar
- Patna, Bihar
- Delhi, was earlier at Top 1
- Lucknow, UP
- Bamenda, Cameroon, Central Africa
- Agra, UP
- Muzaffarpur, Bihar
Choking Reality :
Polluted air is the new free Tobacco. Polluted areas are the new Smoking Zones of the nation. If this is neglected, it would result in establishing No Breathing and Safe Breathing Zones. The ease of getting construction permits did improve our global position but our most essential Air Quality and Land Stability are compromised.
To ease the air we breathe, we need to come up with strict, apt and Eco-conscious measures in doing our businesses. This calls for Green Regulation. Not only in the construction works but also in very running of this nation, as the performance of the majorly agrarian nation should not be at the cost of its people.
A recent PIL filed by a 6 month old and a 14 month old, under assistance of their fathers claiming a threat to their Right To Life had opened few eyes. So, this Diwali has now got many rules than earlier. The triumph of good over evil now has taken a new form as, Victory of Green over Reek.
Introduction of Green Crackers, time limitation of burning them [8 pm- 10 pm], not permitting non-green cracker production and usage despite pleads from distributors etc are few of many measures yet to come. The Centre and The State governments, in fact every citizen of this country must be sentient towards the environment in every move they make. Due recognition of the Crisis at hand and large scale awareness, can only bring about solid changes.
The United Nations Environment Program’s recent report gave us the shocking scenes associated with the rates of pollution. Scientific solutions as remedies to the smogged air were also stated. The reports and the related health issues provide ample proofs for the seriousness of the condition.
Well, the measures were not so productive and people still celebrated a blasting Diwali.“A two day restriction in a year of pollution is not a smart move”. Occasional and Seasonal measures for this dire life problem are no way near sufficient. we have got to pull our act together and Act Together.