IIT-Kanpur to establish network of air-quality sensors to measure pollution in rural India

Tags: National News

The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur has announced that it will undertake a USD 2.5 million (₹19 crore) project to install around 1,400 sensors in rural blocks of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

  • IIT Kanpur is undertaking this project to promote measurement of air pollution in rural India.

  • Air pollution is a serious problem in India's cities, burning of biomass, and dependence on diesel gensets for electricity is deteriorating air quality even in villages.

  • Benefit of the project

  • The outcome of this project will help local communities, policy makers and researchers to understand the real situation.

  • The three-year pilot project will pave the way for a national network of air quality sensors in rural India.

  • The data from this network will also be made available in real time to enable actionable and evidence-based decision making.

  • National Clean Air Programme (NCAP)

  • It was launched in 2019 by the government of India.

  • Under this, a national target has been set to reduce the PM 2.5 and PM10 particulate matter present in the air by 20 to 30 percent, taking 2017 as the base year.

  • Under this scheme, initially 122 cities with the highest air pollution in India have been targeted primarily.

  • Upon its launch, there was a commitment by the government to increase the network of rural air pollution monitoring sensors, but little progress has been made on that front.

  • The country’s current annual safe limits for PM 2.5 and PM 10 are 40 micrograms/per cubic metre (ug/m3) and 60 micrograms/per cubic metre.

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