What are the reasons for the unique state of pollution in Delhi? Examine the reasons and try to give solutions. (15 Marks)

Mentors Comments:
1. Introduce by explaining the state of pollution in Delhi now.
2. Explain the anthropogenic and non-anthropogenic reasons for the state of air.
3. Suggest solutions.

Air pollution is now the third-highest cause of death among all health risks, ranking just above smoking, in India. An environment think tank Centre for Science and Environment in its report “At the crossroad” has said that Life expectancy in India has gone down by 2.6 years due to deadly diseases caused by air pollution.

Reasons For Air Pollution in Delhi

  1. Stubble Burning: Stubble burning in Punjab, Rajasthan, and Haryana is blamed for causing a thick blanket of smog in Delhi during winters.
  2. It emits large amounts of toxic pollutants in the atmosphere which contain harmful gases like methane (CH4), Carbon Monoxide (CO), Volatile organic compounds (VOC) and carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.
  3. Vehicular Emission: The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) have declared vehicular emission as a major contributor to Delhi’s increasing air pollution. Vehicles contribute 40% of the total pollution load in the city.
  4. Topography: Delhi lies in landlocked Indo-Gangetic region which does not have a geographical advantage that eastern, western or southern parts of the country enjoy. There is no sea breeze to disperse the concentrated pollutants.
  5. Construction Sector: Large scale construction in Delhi-NCR is another culprit that is increasing dust and pollution in the air.
  6. Fire Crackers: Despite the ban on cracker sales, firecrackers were a common sight this Diwali. It may not be the top reason for air pollution, but it definitely contributed to its build-up.
  7. Dust Storm from Gulf countries: During the smog in the year 2017, the dust storm from Gulf countries was also the reason which enhanced already worse condition.
  8. Multiple Authorities: The causes of air pollution are multifold and several agencies and ministries are involved, therefore appropriate legislative measures for multi-sectoral participation and collaborating the efforts of state and federal pollution control boards should be taken urgently.

As air pollution in Delhi NCR has become a regular phenomenon, therefore to mitigate the silent killer, the government needs to move beyond tokenism to concrete grassroots steps to curtail the menace.

Various measures have been described below:

  • Stubble Burning: The most efficient technology to counter crop burning at the moment is Turbo Happy Seeder (THS) which is a machine mounted on a tractor that not only cuts and uproots the stubble but can also drill wheat seeds in the soil that have just been cleared up. The straw is simultaneously thrown over the sown seeds to form a mulch cover.

    • Establish Farm Machinery Banks for custom hiring of in-situ crop residue management machinery.
    • Financial Assistance to the farmers for the Procurement of Agriculture Machinery and Equipment.
  • Public Transport: The push for public transport has long been highlighted as a potential solution. However, we are far from implementing it on the ground.

    • The current public transport system is disintegrated. We need to integrate it physically ensuring that it is reliable, comfortable and provides last-mile connectivity but without additional cost.
    • The subsidy given to personal vehicle users makes personal transport comparatively more affordable than public transport. Therefore, parking fees, minimal charges for using the roads and cost of congesting the roads must be aligned in the direction to incentivize personal transport.
  • Municipal Planning: Open burning of municipal solid waste and industrial waste is fouling up the air.

    • The need is to build institutional capacity for implementation and enforcement and have the necessary legal back-up for compliance and strong deterrence.
  • Appropriate political will and aware citizenry is a prerequisite to tackle the menace, otherwise, all the measures will remain on paper only.
  • Greater public transparency is essential to the success of winning the war on air pollution.

    • There is no better watchdog than active citizens, which is why the pollution targets must be made public every year for their perusal and to be evaluated at the end of the year.

Breathing clean air is a fundamental right of every Indian citizen. Therefore, human health must become a priority when it comes to tackling air pollution.

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Reply to  SANU

Your answer is nice but I am suggesting some points
– Your answer is not deviated from question but it is not crisp.
– Extra long points which makes it boring to read.
– No proper suggestion from your side.
– No conclusion.
you have potential you can write better. Proper formation of sentence but it seems like keywords are missing.

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Reply to  amit ojha

Thank you for your suggestion….I will follow it…..But can you please help me with giving some examples regarding how to make my answer crisp? Parth sir also suggested the same but i am confused. Please suggest…..

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