Poor air quality detected in Keishampat area

IMPHAL,13th Sep: With increasing amount of pollutants emitted into the air due to increasing number of vehicles and other factors, the air quality in Keishampat area has become a matter of concern with the possibilities of causing respiratory problems.

As part of its routine operation, Manipur Pollution Control Board collected samples from different areas of Imphal city on September 1 to measure Air Quality Index (AQI). Board chairman MLA L Radhakishore showed the samples collected by the board to media persons on September 1 and the sample collected from Keishampat area showed the white sheet completely dark though the definite measurement was not analysed at that time.

Meanwhile, report from the board said that the level of Particulate Matter (PM10) in air in Keishampat area was found as high as 196 μg (microgram) whereas the satisfactory level in residential – commercial area should be at 100 μg. As per AQI level, this level has the potential to cause breathing discomfort to people with lung disease such as asthma, and discomfort to people with heart disease, children and older adults.

Another sample for presence of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) was also collected on the same day in two shifts. The first shift was measured from 9 am to 1 pm and the second from 1 pm till 3 pm. In the first result, 43.233 μg was detected while the second result showed 38.078 μg per cubic meter. As per guideline of Central Pollution Control Board, the satisfactory limit is 80 μg per cubic meter and it keeps the NO2 level within good and satisfactory level.

Similar samples collected from Kangla western gate showed 98.92 μg of PM10 and 15.636 μg & 22.35 μg of NO2 per cubic meter. Though the level of particulate matter is within the satisfactory level, there is only a difference of a couple of μg to cross the satisfactory level.

Meanwhile, MPCB chairman L Radhakishore led a team of the board officials in measuring noise and air pollution level in front of Nupilal Complex, Imphal on Wednesday. During the operation, several diesel autorickshaw providing passenger services were checked for carbon emission level with the help of police. More than 100 such autorickshaws were found emitting carbon greater than the permissible limit. Those vehicles were seized by the board and handed over to police for taking up necessary legal actions.

Interacting with media persons during the operation, MLA Radhakishore informed that similar operations are being conducted at five different places of Imphal city since September 1 and the operation will continue till September 17. The board will compile a report based on the findings of the operation, he said.

He further said that around 70 per cent of the vehicles being used in Imphal city are unfit ones, which have crossed the license of 15 years, thereby causing air pollution in the state capital. Diesel autorickshaws being used in passenger service are one of the main contributors of noise and air pollution in Imphal city. As such, the board will consider necessary steps to curb pollution level soon.

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