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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Assam: degrading Air Quality or Haze? Guwahati along with three other cities do not meet air quality requirements

Guwahati, Nagaon, Sivasagar, and Silchar are the other four towns in the state that does not fulfil ambient air quality requirements.

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Batori24 Bureau
Batori24 Bureau
Batori24 is a Vernacular based Assamese news portal based in Guwahati Assam. We are a dedicated news channel covering news and stories across the globe with special reference to Assam, north-east along with National and International news.

Nalbari town is not the only city in the nation that does not fulfil ambient air quality requirements. Guwahati, Nagaon, Sivasagar, and Silchar are the other four towns in the state. There are 131 cities in total.

Owing to its high tree cover and proximity to neighbouring states’ forested hills, the upper Assam region’s air quality is still considered better than that of the lower Assam region and Barak Valley, according to Manoj Saikia, senior environmental scientist at the Pollution Control Board, Assam (PCBA).

As a result, the upper Assam region experiences higher rainfall than other areas, which contributes to a reduction in air pollution. Because there is a lot of forest and tree cover along the Indo-Bhutan international border, as well as relatively little automobile emissions, the air quality there is still good, he continued. But he added that Sivasagar is an industrial town because of its oil and natural industry, despite being in the upper Assam region.

He continued by saying that while there is currently live air quality monitoring accessible in just five Assamese cities and towns, the PCBA manually monitors the air quality in the other cities and towns.

The Central Pollution Control Board data indicates that the other northeastern states, namely Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, and Tripura, continue to have either good or satisfactory air quality conditions.

Because these states have a lot of forest cover, the air quality is still decent there. Additionally, there are no industries. Another reason for Assam’s severe air pollution is the creation of dust particles from sandbars during the dry winter months and from hillside earth cutting. But other northeastern states are not affected by this element, Saikia continued.

“Assam’s air quality declines from October to the end of March or early April. The return of the wet season makes things better. The rising water levels in the rivers cause the sandbars to become submerged. The dust particles are controlled by rain. During the wet season, construction also stops,” he continued.

It should be noted that, based on data from the India Meteorological Department, Assam has not seen any rainfall since January 1. Assam, which covers an area of 1,483 square kilometres, more than twice the size of Delhi, has lost the greatest amount of tree cover in the northeast, according to Global Forest Watch.

Due to fast deforestation and urbanisation, Assam has lost 3,060 sq km of tree cover, followed by 2,930 sq km in Mizoram, 2,510 sq km in Arunachal Pradesh, 2,480 sq km in Nagaland, 2,260 sq km in Manipur, 2,018 sq km in Meghalaya, and 1,140 sq km in Tripura between 2001 and the end of 2022.

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