Pune AIR Plan aims to protect residents, raise awareness about air pollution

 

Written by Anuradha Mascarenhas
| Pune |October 15, 2020 10:12:40 pm

The Pune AIR Plan, developed by NRDC and companions, was launched on the webinar ‘Air high quality and public well being in India: dangers from local weather change and Covid-19’. (Representational Picture)

The Pune Air Data and Response (AIR) Plan – a health-based programme designed to guard residents, and enhance consciousness amongst them on air air pollution, was formally launched on Thursday.

In a joint initiative, the Pune Municipal Company (PMC) has partnered with Pure Sources Protection Council (NRDC), an environmental advocacy group, Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology’s SAFAR venture, Centre for Surroundings Schooling and Indian Institute of Public Well being- Gandhinagar to implement the AIR Plan.

“We plan to concentrate on susceptible communities and draw up city-specific mitigation actions in opposition to air air pollution,” Mangesh Dighe, surroundings officer of PMC, instructed .

The Pune AIR Plan, developed by NRDC and companions, was launched on the webinar ‘Air high quality and public well being in India: dangers from local weather change and Covid-19’.

The present pandemic has dropped at the fore the significance and the urgency of retaining public well being as the main target of our efforts at surroundings safety. “Pune AIR Plan is one such instance which retains well being threat communication on the coronary heart of air high quality administration in our cities,” mentioned Dighe.

To guard native communities from rising air air pollution, the PMC and companions use two interlinked instruments: an air high quality index (AQI) and the Air Data and Response (AIR) Plan. The AQI and AIR plan are linked to the Pune Clear Air Plan (CAP), as a part of the Nationwide Clear Air Plan (NCAP), defined Dighe.

The goal is to cut back well being dangers by strengthening city-level inter-agency coordination and the air high quality alert system, and work with native consultants to determine key interventions for air air pollution discount. Initially, the Faculty Flags Programme had been launched as a part of this effort in order that youngsters are sensitised in the direction of the significance of excellent air high quality ranges and show colored flags that correspond to the Air High quality Index at colleges.

On the webinar, Gina McCarthy, president and CEO of NRDC, mentioned the Covid-19 problem can be utilized as a wake-up name to be higher ready and to acknowledge the risk that air air pollution poses to public well being. “These problems with air air pollution and local weather change are concerning the well being of the individuals. If we work collectively, we are able to shield what’s most essential – our households,” mentioned McCarthy.

“Measuring air quality-linked well being indicators will help Ahmedabad and different cities to attain their NCAP targets. There may be rising proof that the majority polluted cities are worst hit resulting from Covid-19. Nevertheless, we’d like extra information to seize the impression of air air pollution on numerous elements of well being,” mentioned Dr Dileep Mavalankar, director of the Indian Institute of Public Well being.

Steady evaluation of essential public well being indicators at a granular, disaggregated degree has the potential to assist us determine and prioritise interventions, mentioned Dr Mavalankar.

In his presentation, Dr Gufran Beig, senior scientist of SAFAR programme at IITM, mentioned that Covid-19 and the following lockdown has been the most important demonstration of our occasions that Indian cities can also have clear air and blue skies. “By means of the creation of scientifically-guided supply emission databases, vital early warning methods and sturdy air high quality administration plans, Pune and different Indian cities can enhance air high quality,” mentioned Dr Beig.

“Communication, schooling and sharing info with the neighborhood is important to defending public well being from air air pollution,” Polash Mukerjee, air high quality professional and marketing consultant, NRDC, mentioned through the panel dialogue.

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