SRINAGAR: There is a possibility that Continuous Automatic Air Quality Monitoring Stations (CAAQMS) may come up across Jammu and Kashmir with the Government of India (GoI) agreeing to the state authorities’ suggestion that the sanction be accorded to the lone bidder for installation of such devices in J&K.
After receiving a poor response for this vital project that would monitor the state’s ever-increasing pollution levels, the State Pollution Control Board (SPCB) had apprised the GoI’s Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) about this issue.
As per the SPCB officials, they have agreed to accord sanction to the lone bidder who has come forward during the tendering process
Director SPCB Dr Syed Nadeem Hussain Qadri told Kashmir Reader that tenders floated by the board have received a poor response for the last two years. “We were receiving only one bidding company for this; we have raised this issue with the government for negotiations with bidding companies. And finally they have agreed to the one bidding company.”
He added that, “Hopefully, we will finalise all the legal terms with the company and will soon start working on the project. If the project is through, it will monitor SPM and analyse the data across the state.,”
An SPCB official said, “In dust, there are different kinds of particulate matter, measuring less than 2.5 microns and 10 microns respectively in diameter, which can cause serious health problems if inhaled over the long-term. The 2.5 type is particularly dangerous as it is small enough to penetrate the defences of the body and directly enter the bloodstream.”
Air quality in JK has fallen drastically over the years. Due to the rising number of vehicles, crushers, factories and brick kilns, SPM and respiratory suspended particulate matter (RSPM) have witnessed a sharp increase.
To overcome Srinagar city’s air pollution problem, an attempt was made earlier by the CPCB to sanction CAAQMSs under the National Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Act.
CAAQMS can monitor pollutants using different analysers, thereby reducing the chances of manual error while generating and transmitting data at time-intervals of minutes.
At the time of sanctioning of the stations, the CPCB released its 50 percent share,that is Rs 55 lakh, and asked the state government to arrange the remaining 50% from its own resources.