Mumbai: The Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) has announced that nine air monitoring stations will be removed from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) portal due to inaccurate air quality readings. These stations, which are managed by the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, an autonomous institute of the Ministry of Earth Sciences, will undergo recalibration and relocation before being added back to the portal, as stated by officials.
The decision to remove the stations was made after the MPCB requested the CPCB to take them off the portal two weeks ago. The reason for this request was that the stations were not calibrated correctly and some were not positioned according to CPCB guidelines. However, the MPCB had to provide proof of the inaccurate readings, which they submitted last week.
Currently, there are a total of 23 active Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Stations (CAAQMS) in Mumbai, with 14 managed by the MPCB and 9 by the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM). As of Tuesday 6pm, the average 24-hour Air Quality Index (AQI) for Mumbai was 152, indicating a moderate level of air pollution.
These monitoring stations are strategically distributed across various micro-environments of the city, including upwind and downtown areas, background areas, industrialized areas, residential areas, and coastal areas. This ensures comprehensive coverage of the entire city and provides a representative average, according to an official.
Citizens advised to take precautions
Meanwhile, the India Air Quality Index (IQAir), an organization monitoring air quality, has reported that Mumbai has experienced poor air quality for more than three consecutive days, posing a risk to residents' health. Although there has been a slight improvement in air quality, citizens are advised to take precautions for their well-being. IQAir recommends avoiding unnecessary outdoor activities, using masks when going outside, and considering the installation of air purifiers at home, if possible.
On Tuesday, the areas of Kherwadi, BKC, Chembur, and Worli recorded the highest pollution levels in the city.
According to IQAir, the PM10 limit in Mumbai at 6.30 pm on Tuesday was 110 ug/m3, slightly exceeding the national standard of 100. The PM2.5 concentration in the city was measured at 58.2 ug/m3, which is currently 11.6 times higher than the World Health Organization's annual air quality guideline value.