Thane begins week with second-best air in country

November 8, 2019

THANE: Residents of the lake city seem to be breathing some of the cleanest air in the country, reveals a study by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

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A 24-hour analysis of the average air quality index (AQI) of 97 cities across the country from 4 pm on November 3 to November 4 revealed the city had an air quality level at 45.

Eloor in Kerala had the best air, followed by Thirvanthapuram and Kota.

The quality of air is considered to be good when eight pollutants, including sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, suspended particulates, carbon monoxide and ozone, are within permissible limits.

The air quality in Thane improved from satisfactory some days ago to good on Monday, found the study. The Thane Municipal Corporation claimed the development was a result of its initiatives and the increased awareness among residents.

Experts attributed the good air quality levels to the unseasonal showers over the past few days that might have helped neutralise the toxicity in the air even as the city witnessed one of the slowest moving traffic and spate of construction, both activities known to be contributing heavily to air pollution.

“The last few days have witnessed rainfall while the overall temperature was also high which may have helped the pollutants escape into the atmosphere thereby helping curb the air pollutants. However, this is not enough and residents must work towards ensuring a pollution-free city by reducing the volume of vehicles and latching on to car-pools whenever possible.

The corporation could also reduce waiting time at select signals in the city and jams due to metro works thereby reducing the discharge of pollutants in the air,” said citizen activist Dr Mahesh Bedekar.

The neighbouring cities of Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Kalyan and, across the Western Ghats, Pune witnessed their AQI scaled down over the past few days to satisfactory levels from good, a phenomenon that was attributed to Diwali crackers.

Activists blamed the ongoing metro works and delayed infrastructure projects like the Patripool bridge in Kalyan for the traffic jams that add to increased idling time for vehicles adding to air pollution in cities.

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