Praja has gathered the data of air quality through an Right to Information query to the Central Pollution Control Board.
Mumbai: The Mumbai-based NGO Praja Foundation has claimed that the Mumbai air has been deteriorating steadily since the last two years. As per the report, the monthly average of Air Quality Index (AQI), an indicator of pollutants in the air, has increased for several months during the last year with respect to the corresponding period in 2016.
Praja has gathered the data of air quality through an Right to Information (RTI) query to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). The number of days that witnessed poor air last year has also risen by 35 per cent since 2016.
The monthly average AQI of eight months in 2017 were higher, compared to the same in 2016. Only May, June and August 2017 showed better air quality.
“The highest average monthly AQI has increased from 170 in January 2016 to 186 in January 2017. The highest average monthly AQI was 139 in October 2015. This indicates that the already poor air quality had turned even poorer,” read the Praja report.
Experts at Praja stated that the ongoing development activities, vehicular pollution along with the changing weather conditions could be the reason behind the deteriorating AQI.
The highest AQI has been constantly increasing over the years — 241 in 2015, 276 in 2016, 500 in 2017. The report also suggested that even when 2017 had the worst average Air Quality Index than 2016, complaints related to air pollution have almost remained steady in both the years.
Around 153 complaints were received 2016 and 149 complaints in 2017. “Although there were lesser complaints this year, our study found out that there were more grievances related to pollution from release of chemical effluents in 2017 than the previous years,” added Mr. Kulkarni.
According to the Praja report, the complaints related to air pollution from chemical effluents increased by 67 per cent since 2015.