Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): Open constructions contribute 65% to air pollution in Bhopal, while vehicular emissions account for 30% and biomass burning for 5% to 7%, according to environmentalists. Post-Diwali, the Air Quality Index (AQI) has surged above 300 in the city.
Kolar six-lane project is one of the major contributors to the air pollution in the state capital. The construction company is not adhering to the guidelines of the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF).
Divisional commissioner Dr Pawan Kumar Sharma has instructed to increase the Pollution Under Control (PUC) outlets in the city. The high rate of PUC certificates is deterring people from going for the fitness checkup. While petrol costs around Rs 110 per liter but Rs 500 is charged for checking pollution level and issuing certificates.
Expressing concern over the deteriorating AQI, environmentalist Dr SC Pandey said. “ As per the MoEF guidelines, sprinklers are to be used within the vicinity of 200 meter of construction site to settle down dust. But the construction company hardly complies with it. Kolar six-lane project is majorly responsible for the city's air pollution. Bhopal AQI is hovering above 300 since Diwali. Heavy particles settle down but less than 2.5 micrograms per cubic meters fly with air from higher density to lower density and cause problems to cardiovascular patients.”
He further added that vehicular pollution is also responsible for poor air quality. High cost of the PUC certificate is also discouraging motorists from going for the vehicle fitness checking. Adulteration in diesel and petrol is a major concern, he said adding that burning of biomass, traditional tandoor releases nitrogen oxide which reduces oxygen level.”
Green activist Rashid Noor Khan said, “Undergoing construction works are a major cause of air pollution in Bhopal. Even after NGT order, nothing is being done for compliance. No sprinkle is being used to settle the dust down, while no net is being used to prevent dust from spreading to other places.”
PUC rate is too high: MPPCB
MPPCB regional officer Brijesh Sharma said, “Three major factors have been identified for air pollution in Bhopal. Transportation, vehicular and burning of garbage are key factors for air pollution. Besides, construction is also a major cause for poor air quality. “PUC rate is very high and it should be at par with petrol and fuel stations should provide it free of cost. Not only traditional tandoors, but vehicular pollution, stubble burning in agriculture farms are contributing to air pollution.”
Free PUC on full tank fuel
Petrol pump dealers’ association president Ajay Singh said that district collector Asheesh Singh had directed to provide free PUC on getting full tank fuel at petrol pumps.