This is NCR for you today! Phew!
Pollution is one of the major issues causing concern not only in India but also globally. While India has advanced and developed rapidly since Independence, the results have come along at a great environment cost. We, as a nation, are ranked at 177 with an EPI of 30.57 on the Global Environment Performance Index (EPI). What scares us more that the national capital of Delhi/NCR is amongst the worst affected cities in the world. Let us first understand the parameters of measuring Pollution.
Particulate Matter (PM) for Measuring Pollution
One way of measuring pollution is by the measure of particulate matter. Particulate matter is basically a mixture of extremely small particles and liquid droplets like acids, chemicals, gas, water, metals, soil dust particles, etc., the measurement of which gives an idea of the pollution of a city. It is also known as ‘particle pollution’ or PM.
Air Quality Index (AQI) is another way of measuring Pollution. This parameter is generally used by the government agencies to indicate to the public, how polluted the current air quality is or how polluted it is due to become. As the AQI increases, it can be hazardous and even eventually fatal for an increasingly large percentage of the population.
Are We, As Citizens, Doing Enough?
We can keep grumbling, positing and tweeting all day long about the terrible conditions that we are surviving in. However, the vital question remains, are we doing enough as responsible citizens? Are we thinking in broader perspective to control pollution? What are we creating for our children and their future generations? Are our parents and elders safe?
The easiest thing to do is to blame the ruling government for the mess that we have landed ourselves in. Yes and rightly so, because the macro level decisions will be actioned by them. But can we all not pledge in our small way to begin this charity from the confines of our home!
Remember Every Small Step Can Take Us Closer to Nature…
Prashant Narayan, Founder of 1000 Bamboo Tours, shares his thoughts on curbing pollution in NCR. He says,
“We have to have better utilization of public transport systems. Number of public transport buses have to be increased drastically. Transportation is important and has to keep pace with the demands, else people will be forced to use their own vehicles.”
He also adds that one vehicle is per family is important. However, taxes for the second vehicle purchase in the family should be increased. Not undermining that the increase in public transportation network should happen in a parallel manner.
He also proposes that all polluting Industries have to be moved out of the city and the NCR region. He strongly advocates heavy penalties for non compliance.
1000 Bamboo Tours specialises in Inbound Tours, where they welcome international guests to India and customise holiday packages for them. Narayan expresses acute anguish with the quality of air experienced during their domestic holidays and indicates that this will surely hamper the idea of Incredible India Campaign in the future.
The Delhi Government for past 2-3 years has been rolling out the Odd-Even Concept during the Diwali period. The scheme regulated traffic on the road to curtail vehicular pollution, by allowing cars with licence plate ending with odd numbers to ply on one day and allow those with even numbers on the next day. Two-wheelers too, were brought under this ambit in 2017, which made up for over 60 per cent of Delhi traffic.
Upasana Mahtani Luthra, Founder of Book Reporter, also pens her thoughts on addressing this menace. She quotes,
- Stop all construction one month prior and post Diwali
- Trucks that exhale exhaust fumes should be fined and disallowed on roads
- Industries expelling black , toxic fumes should be penalised
- Crop burning MUST stop , it should be eradicated
Upasana also carved out an effective poster, giving a strong message of being a responsible citizen during the festival of lights.
We also spoke with a couple of residents living in condominiums in the NCR region. They highly recommended a strong involvement of the RWAs (Resident Welfare Associations) in various localities in enabling segregation of garbage from respective homes and societies. They suggested that every society must take up the onus and start planting more and more trees or oxygen exhaling planters in common areas. Controlling the use of energy and making use of electricity efficiently was also on top of their suggestions.
Khushboo Yadav, a student from Gurgaon emphasised on the urgent need of promoting recycling. She even cited a example from some European countries, where plastic bottles were to be returned back to the store after use. The government there returns the taxes, on collection of used bottles.
Top Executives Refuse NCR Positions Despite Salary Hike
As per a report published by Economic Times, an analytics head at a Bangalore based tech firm refused a job offer in Delhi despite an 80% jump in salary. Another group finance head of a Mumbai-based consumer company also turned down an offer in the NCR region during to poor health quality. The head of operations at a Chennai based engineering firm and the quality head of a Bangalore-based auto company too declined NCR based job offers.
It is only a matter of time when citizens within NCR either demand a strict plan of action from the administration, along with being responsible themselves, or take the easy way of migrating out of the city in search of better air quality.
ALSO READ –