The Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board (APPCB) is getting equipped to give up the present and ‘crude’ methodology of stack monitoring of industries and go in for most modern online assessment of pollution.

The board is working towards putting in place the necessary technology to go in for an online and real time monitoring of the industries and has directed all major units to install the required systems in their premises. The continuous monitoring will be linked to the central server and facilitate authorities to keep an eye on the units real time.

According to the officials, the necessary software has been developed and the work on connecting units that already commissioned the infrastructure with the central server is going on. “We are looking at launching the trial runs by January 25 and in phases, cover the major units across the State,” he said.

Of the 100-odd identified industrial units, nearly 30 have already come up with the infrastructure needed to link with the PCB and by the end of February; another 50 units are expected to get linked. “Once the setup is in place, the monitoring will throw up results in real time and sitting here in my office, I can monitor as to what the situation is there at any given unit,” said the APPCB Member Secretary, K.Madhusudan Rao.

All the major industrial units dealing in bulk drugs, cement to paper has been asked to get the facility which would generate data relating to all the parameters of the ambient air quality in their premises. “To ensure transparency, we will be putting the data on website for the citizens to check for themselves,” Mr.Rao said.

The present practice of monitoring has the staff visiting industries on random basis and collecting the samples. “It is a rather crude practice of climbing the chimney and taking the samples and also fraught with certain scope for error,” the PCB officials concede.

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