According to Airpocalypse-IV, an annual report released by Greenpeace India, Jharkhand city, Jharia, continues to be the most polluted city in the country as per the Greenpeace report, and the reason being coal fires. Neighbouring, Dhanbad, came in second on Tuesday.
The report was based on the analysis of particulate matter data across 287 cities. It ranked Delhi as the 10th most polluted city in 2018. Greenpeace has used Central Pollution Control Board data as its source to rank the most polluted cities in India.
The report states Lunglei in Mizoram as the least polluted city in India, followed by Meghalaya’s Dowki. Six of the top-10 polluted cities were in Uttar Pradesh: Noida, Ghaziabad, Bareilly, Allahabad, Moradabad, and Firozabad.
AK Rastogi, chairman of Jharkhand State Pollution Control Board stated, “The data of 2018 was analysed in the report and we are in 2020. The measures taken to improve the condition in past one year are not reflected . Improvement in the air quality will be visible in the next year’s report, as several steps have been taken.”
According to the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) “The permissible limit for PM-10 is 60 ug/m3, while it is mere 20 ug/m3, as per the World Health Organization (WHO).”
Jharia and Dhanbad were cities belonging to the coal-belt of Jharkhand. PM-10 levels were recorded at 322 ug/m3 (micrograms per cubic meter) in Jharia, the highest in the country, while the same was recorded 264 un/m3 in Dhanbad, the second-highest in the country.
AK Rastogi, chairman of Jharkhand State Pollution Control Board also stated, ” As severe restrictions were imposed on unscientific coal dumping and coal transportation. In 2019, the government of India launched the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP), a five-year action plan with a target of reducing concentrations of PM-10 and PM-2.5 by up to 30% by 2024 in 102 non-attainment cities, with 2017 as the base year.”
Jharkhand pollution board officials cited the following reasons that have led to pollution: It includes vehicular emission, road dust, air pollution from biomass burning and industrial, construction and demolition activities, from diesel generator sets, and from the use of coal in dhabas and roadside eateries.