Sharp increase in vehicle population to blame for rising pollution levels
Air pollution, hitherto considered a problem of the core area, has spread to the suburbs.
The Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board (APPCB) data from different monitoring stations during the last fortnight has Uppal registering the highest Respirable Particulate Matter (RSPM) and also a high Total Suspended Particulate Matter (TSPM).
These two key parameters for air quality were found to be higher there than highly spots such as Punjagutta, Paradise, Abids and Charminar. Even locations such as Madhapur and Langar Houz, which hardly used to be a bleep in terms of RSPM and TSPM, were found to be highly polluted.
The rise in pollution is directly attributed to the sharp increase in the number of vehicles. Interestingly, the PCB data pertained to the festive season of Sankranti when pollution levels usually take a dip as many leave for their native places, and vehicles remain off the road.
The acceptable standards for RSPM happen to be 100 micrograms per cubic metre, but the data shows that it is much higher in most parts of the city. In Uppal and Madhapur, even the holiday season does not document much of a fall in pollution levels.
The RSPM recording at Uppal was 194 micrograms per cubic metre on January 11, and two days later, it rose to 272. In Madhapur, it was 168 micrograms per cubic metre on January 12, an indication that pollution levels remained high even on what once were considered as less pollution days.