Indian, British experts to battle Delhi air pollution
New Delhi, Jan 23 (IANS) Researchers from India and Britain have partnered for a project that may help tackle health problems associated with air pollution in Delhi.
In the project — ASAP-Delhi: An Integrated Study of Air Pollutant Sources in the Delhi National Capital Region — experts will measure airborne particulate matter and analyse how the pollution is being generated.
“Air quality is one of the most important environmental challenges facing Delhi. This project will allow us to definitively quantify the contributions of different sources to fine particles in Delhi’s air — a key step to solving this problem,” Mukesh Khare, a professor at IIT Delhi, said in a statement on Monday.
With air pollution levels at times up to 30 times greater than those found in the UK, Delhi — home to nearly 18 million people — was rated as the world’s most polluted city for ambient air pollution by the WHO in 2014.
Many Asian countries, including India, are seeing poor air quality in cities — mainly fine and ultrafine particles.
“Some 46 million people live in and around Delhi and extremely high particulate matter levels are responsible for damaging citizens’ health and the environment, leaving many unable to work, which has significant economic implications for the region,” added William Bloss, Professor at the University of Birmingham.
The project will run for four years and will involve a series of field studies and follow-on analyses to determine the sources and processes responsible for airborne particulate matter in Delhi, linking with other projects funded in parallel to develop mitigation options.
“This partnership in Delhi chimes with Prime Minister Narenda Modi’s Smart Cities Mission to make India’s cities citizen-friendly and sustainable,” Bloss said.