Utter nonsense all this talk about controlling pollution and buck passing , its killing people and many will die of it in the future and no one is responsible .
NEW DELHI — In mid-January, air pollution in Beijing was so bad that the government issued urgent health warnings and closed four major highways, prompting the panicked buying of air filters and donning of face masks. But in New Delhi, where pea-soup smog created what was by some measurements even more dangerous air, there were few signs of alarm in the country’s boisterous news media, or on its effervescent Twittersphere.
Despite Beijing’s widespread reputation of having some of the most polluted air of any major city in the world, an examination of daily pollution figures collected from both cities suggests that New Delhi’s air is more laden with dangerous small particles of pollution, more often, than Beijing’s. Lately, a very bad air day in Beijing is about an average one in New Delhi.
The United States Embassy in Beijing sent out warnings in mid-January, when a measure of harmful fine particulate matter known as PM2.5 went above 500, in the upper reaches of the measurement scale, for the first time this year. This refers to particulate matter less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter, which is believed to pose the greatest health risk because it penetrates deeply into lungs.
But for the first three weeks of this year, New Delhi’s average daily peak reading of fine particulate matter from Punjabi Bagh, a monitor whose readings are often below those of other city and independent monitors, was 473, more than twice as high as the average of 227 in Beijing. By the time pollution breached 500 in Beijing for the first time on the night of Jan. 15, Delhi had already had eight such days. Indeed, only once in three weeks did New Delhi’s daily peak value of fine particles fall below 300, a level more than 12 times the exposure limit recommended by the World Health Organization.
“It’s always puzzled me that the focus is always on China and not India,” said Dr. Angel Hsu, director of the environmental performance measurement program at the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy. “China has realized that it can’t hide behind its usual opacity, whereas India gets no pressure to release better data. So there simply isn’t good public data on India like there is for China.”
Experts have long known that India’s air is among the worst in the world. A recent analysis by Yale researchers found that seven of the 10 countries with the worst air pollution exposures are in South Asia. And evidence is mounting that Indians pay a higher price for air pollution than almost anyone. A recent study showed that Indians have the world’s weakest lungs, with far less capacity than Chinese lungs. Researchers are beginning to suspect that India’s unusual mix of polluted air, poor sanitation and contaminated water may make the country among the most dangerous in the world for lungs.
India has the world’s highest death rate because of chronic respiratory diseases, and it has more deaths from asthma than any other nation, according to the World Health Organization. A recent study found that half of all visits to doctors in India are for respiratory problems, according to Sundeep Salvi, director of the Chest Research Foundation in Pune.
Clean Air Asia, an advocacy group, found that another common measure of pollution known as PM10, for particulate matter less than 10 micrometers in diameter, averaged 117 in Beijing in a six-month period in 2011. In New Delhi, the Center for Science and Environment used government data and found that an average measure of PM10 in 2011 was 281, nearly two-and-a-half times higher.
Perhaps most worrisome, Delhi’s peak daily fine particle pollution levels are 44 percent higher this year than they were last year, when they averaged 328 over the first three weeks of the year. Fine particle pollution has beenstrongly linked with premature death, heart attacks, strokes and heart failure. In October, the World Health Organization declared that it caused lung cancer.
The United States Embassy in Beijing posts on Twitter the readings of its air monitor, helping to spur awareness of the problem. The readings have more than 35,000 followers. The United States does not release similar readings from its New Delhi Embassy, saying the Indian government releases its own figures.
In China, concerns about air quality have transfixed many urban residents, and some government officials say curbing the pollution is a priority.
But in India, Delhi’s newly elected regional government did not mention air pollution among its 18 priorities, and India’s environment minister quit in December amid widespread criticism that she was delaying crucial industrial projects. Her replacement, the government’s petroleum minister, almost immediately approved several projects that could add considerably to pollution. India and China strenuously resisted pollution limits in global climate talks in Warsaw in November.
Frank Hammes, chief executive of IQAir, a Swiss-based maker of air filters, said his company’s sales were hundreds of times higher in China than in India.
“In China, people are extremely concerned about the air, especially around small children,” Mr. Hammes said. “Why there’s not the same concern in India is puzzling.”
In multiple interviews, Delhiites expressed a mixture of unawareness and despair about the city’s pollution levels. “I don’t think pollution is a major concern for Delhi,” said Akanksha Singh, a 20-year-old engineering student who lives on Delhi’s outskirts in Ghaziabad, adding that he felt that Delhi’s pollution problems were not nearly as bad as those of surrounding towns.
In 1998, India’s Supreme Court ordered that Delhi’s taxis, three-wheelers and buses be converted to compressed natural gas, but the resulting improvements in air quality were short-lived as cars flooded the roads. In the 1970s, Delhi had about 800,000 vehicles; now it has 7.5 million, with 1,400 more added daily.
“Now the air is far worse than it ever was,” said Anumita Roy Chowdhury, executive director of the Center for Science and Environment.
Indians’ relatively poor lung function has long been recognized, but researchers assumed for years that the difference was genetic.
Then a 2010 study found that the children of Indian immigrants who were born and raised in the United States had far better lung function than those born and raised in India.
“It’s not genetics; it’s mostly the environment,” said Dr. MyLinh Duong, an assistant professor of respirology at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario.
In a study published in October, Dr. Duong compared lung tests taken in 38,517 healthy nonsmokers from 17 countries who were matched by height, age and sex. Indians’ lung function was by far the lowest among those tested.
All of this has led some wealthy Indians to consider leaving.
Annat Jain, a private equity investor who returned to India in 2001 after spending 12 years in the United States, said his father died last year of heart failure worsened by breathing problems. Now his 4-year-old daughter must be given twice-daily breathing treatments.
“But whenever we leave the country, everyone goes back to breathing normally,” he said. “It’s something my wife and I talk about constantly.”
The magnitude of the problem is so mind boggling that only some very stringent measures can actually curb this chaos theory on the roads .
BY ONE ESTIMATE THERE ARE A 100 MILLION TRAFFIC VIOLATIONS IN DELHI EVERY SINGLE DAY .
Its amazing that people are selling fruits on the road take for example Chattarpur Road and also all sorts of cars stop and offer shared lifts to people block the road , how is it allowed and have seen traffic cops take action but they say it wont deter these people and also on MG road Delhi side cars are always illegally parked on the road , why have these commercial areas been given permission when they have no provision for parking for their customers .
Simple improvements on the roads would greatly ease the traffic flow like dividers on the roads for those going straight and those turning as sometimes the lights are timed open more for people going straight than those turning and hence the ones who have to turn block the path of those going straight .
Block of a lot these small cuts or turning which hinder free flow of traffic , people should be willing to take a longer path than these quick turns which block traffic flow
2017 Not much improvement – dont see the basic that is CCTV cameras – where are the interceptor vehicles and worst is the use of Traffic policemen to regulate traffic still special in places where there are traffic lights and they dont have pollution masks which will have consequences for their health and many are suffering the effects and then no body cameras and why should traffic police be engaged in Challan duties again a waste of their time when you can easily have a camera system with number plate reading and send Challans home but is there a will to organize the traffic situation or let these psycho truck drivers kill people and now the menace of app based taxi services they are always on their phones or looking at the map on the phone and most of them dont have basic driving skills and then there is a issue of criminals who are driving these taxi’s they are being sublet and they park anywhere adding to congestion then these electric rickshaws who no lights and basically cheap Chinese variety are hazards but the worse they drive in middle of main roads which poses a grave danger -
In Gurgaon the rise of these beastly shared auto and their criminal drivers and multiple accidents cases of serious crime murder of child and then raping the mother – they follow no traffic rules and spew the worst sort of pollution dont which diesel they use is it mixed with other chemicals and makes it more toxic and in general the basic driving sense of people in the city with no zoning laws cars are parked everywhere on the roads along with buses and trucks which rampage through the roads .
2016 November – Does center bother about the traffic situation – why hasn’t it introduced e- challans which some cities are already implementing and traffic challans are being sent home it will really act as a serious deterrence to traffic violators but the thing is there is no will on part of government to implement such things and most of the traffic situation is left to traffic policemen to manage at peak hours in this hazardous pollution with no masks and there no body cameras on them – the other aspect is no cameras at major traffic junction forget at all of them and it is not expensive to implement a smart traffic grid managed from central locations and it will result in traffic policemen not tied up in regulating traffic instead the can help remove major blockages at intersections .
No traffic policemen in the night to check the rampant drunk driving and illegal trucks passing through Delhi and psychos on the roads .
2016 Second odd / even not that great – traffic situation is worsening due to the weather / rains and horrible conditions of the roads literally cratered and no repairs thats how callous the authorities are now .
Traffic situation still bad – Odd / Even experiment – good outcome , traffic rationing , good to see number plate reading camera’s installed at Delhi’s borders – still don’t see interceptor vehicles – trucks are still a menace and some are roaming around Delhi even during the day and recent accident children killed in the afternoon by a drunk truck driver in Keshavpuram – send challans at home – each and every traffic light has to equipped with number plate reading cameras – traffic cops with body cameras dont see them with that -
worst part bad road design and traffic sense of people – install dividers for traffic turning so that those going straight dont obstruct passage and same for those turning dont obstruct those going straight this will greatly improve traffic flow and also seal certain passages or passes they are simply not needed and add to traffic jams – the other part is on major intersections there are blockages because of cars parked for collecting people and other commercial activities on the road like fruit sellers etc slows down the traffic considerably .
trucks entering Delhi still not paying taxes – enter via Jonapur /Mandi gaon Faridbad road .
Why doesn’t the traffic police install camera’s on major roads , that’s the least they can do to check rash driving and illegal trucks going through Delhi during the day .
What sort of rubbish is this that agency that is supposed to collect toll tax cannot collect the new tax imposed by the supreme court .
the tax anyway gives legitimacy to these polluting trucks driven by drivers who have no driving sense , only recently they have killed people vv and aiims , they follow no traffic rules whatsoever and now the best part is they are given a licence to kill by paying a paltry Rs 1000 tax for pollution which is far less than what they must be paying on the side to those who are letting them go through the city and create havoc .
all this is nonsense can end overnight if cameras and a few honest checks were employed , the worst part is now trailer trucks with 20+ wheels are racing through the city and they are seen even during the day time ,
number plate reading cameras dont cost much and they are the simplest and effective solution for these trucks and fix responsibility on the entry point from which they originate .
while we citizens of Delhi have to follow all rules and regulation these trucks are the real vvip no rules or regulation apply to them , how can this nonsense be allowed ,
impound these trucks or tell them to take another route ,
this is massive corruption racket going on and no one is interested in stopping it or even investigating it .
we the citizens of Delhi our life is of no value .
another thing is how many people have been prosecuted for rash driving one sees lunatics driving dangerously on roads everyday ,
why aren’t there more of those interceptors on the major roads and send the challans at home and when it was done it was very effective , why did that stop just because some vvip got the challans ,
the solutions are there for the traffic police but there and so are funds yet no one seems interested in sorting out the problem’s related to the worsening traffic situation .
Flooded roads. Milelong traffic snarls. Rising tempers. Clueless authorities. And it gets worse after every rain spell. Take Friday for instance: It took just 15mm of rainfall to bring the national Capital to a standstill. Stuck in traffic jams for several hours, many Delhiites would now think twice before wishing for rain.