Andhra Pradesh Pollution control board to monitor air quality

RAJAHMUNDRY: AP Pollution Control Board authorities are monitoring the ambient air quality at a select place in the city to suggest to the Government to initiate corrective measures in case of any abnormalities found in the air quality. 

The APPCB has set up Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Station recently in a residential-cum-commercial area at Anam Kala Kendram located just opposite the Municipal Corporation office. It monitors the major pollutants in the air including carbon monoxide, ozone, nitrogen oxide, sulphur dioxide, lead, ammonia, particulate matter (less than 10 microgram per cubic metre), particulate matter (less than 2.5 microgram per cubic metre) in addition to day temperature, relative humidity, wind speed, direction and rainfall.

The monitoring station records the values of pollutants and others every five minutes. One hour's average data is then released. For every 24 hours in a day, data will be generated and values of average, minimum and maximum will be recorded. Similarly, based on daily data, annual data will be generated. A display board set up on top of the auditorium building will show the data for the benefit of general public. Daily data will also be sent to the head office of APPCB and this will be posted online on the website of APPCB to serve as a ready reckoner for the Government.

Central Pollution Control Board has notified national ambient air quality standards and accordingly, the observations of the monitoring station on various pollutants will be tallied at stipulated periods like an hour, eight hours, 24 hours and on annual basis. Values of pollutants in the air will be high especially during winter and will be relatively less during summer and the rainy season.

As per national ambient air quality standards, the concentration of sulphur dioxide in ambient air is normal up to 80 microgram per cubic meter for 24 hours at industrial, residential, rural and other areas.

Similarly, nitrogen dioxide is 80 for 24 hours, particulate matter (size less than 10 microgram per cubic meter) is 100 for 24 hours, particulate matter (size less than 2.5 microgram per cubic meter) is 60 for 24 hours, ozone is 100 for eight hours and 180 for an hour, lead is one for 24 hours, carbon monoxide is two for eight hours and four for an hour and ammonia is 400 for an hour and 100 per annum.

The values go up for short period observation when compared to long duration observation.

The PCB authorities collected data of the above mentioned pollutants and others for three months-August, September and October 2017-at the monitoring station and found no major abnormalities in the values of pollutants found at select places in the city. They say that in case of any major abnormalities in the values of pollutants, they will alert the concerned local authorities to initiate corrective measures to control raising levels of pollution in the ambient air.

State Pollution Control Board East Godavari environmental engineer Mr. A. Rama Rao Naidu said, "We have set up the ambient air quality monitoring station recently at a residential cum commercial area in Rajahmundry to measure air quality and suggest to the government to initiate steps in case of deviations.”

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