It was a noisy Diwali this year: Pollution Board - The New Indian Express

It was a noisy Diwali this year: Pollution Board

Published: 22nd November 2012 12:00 PM

Last Updated: 22nd November 2012 12:00 PM

The concerted campaign against use of firecrackers in the Capital City produced mixed results this Diwali. While noise level in the city was higher throughout, the air pollution level was found to be a little above the permissible limit during the day except for 8 hours from 2 pm and 10 pm. During this time, concentration of particulate matter shot up two to three times more than the permissible limit.

According to the statistics provided by Odisha State Pollution Control Board (OSPCB) on Wednesday, which monitored the ambient noise levels in different areas of the city on Diwali, an increase of noise pollution was observed. While the permissible noise level is 50 dBA, it was around 80 dBA this Diwali. Ironically, the highest increase among the monitored areas was found around Lingaraj temple.

The ambient air quality was also monitored at five locations of Bhubaneswar on Diwali between 6 am and 2 pm, 2 pm and 10 pm and from 10 pm to 6 am by the OSPCB officials. These five areas were IRC Village, Capital Police Station (Unit 1),  Palasuni, Patrapada and Nilakantha Nagar (Unit-VIII).

Analysis revealed that though there was an increase in concentration of Sulpher Dioxide and Nitrogen Oxide these still remained within the prescribed standards but concentration of respirable particulate matter (RSPM) and suspended particulate matter (SPM) exceeded the stipulated standards during the period.

Senior Environment Scientist, OSPCB, Vivekananda Bhol said while the permissible limit for particulate matters is 80 microgram per meter cube, it was 200 microgram per meter cube as far as SPM is concerned and 100 microgram per meter cube for RSPM, between 2 pm and 10 pm.

“In fact, the findings revealed that concentration of all pollutants, including noise, was at its peak during those eight hours when there was maximum activity,” Bhol said.

Besides Bhubaneswar, noise and air monitoring at various locations in the seven towns of Cuttack, Rayagada, Rourkela, Angul, Sambalpur, Balasore and Berhampur - was undertaken during day and night at three different times -- pre Diwali, during and post festival.

The compilation of date collected from all other towns is in process, the scientist said, adding that the pollution figures of this year were more or less similar to last year.

“As far as pollution during major festivals is concerned, it is during Kartik Purnima that bacteriological matter in the rivers rise due to mass bathing by people. The situation isn’t the same during Ganesh or Durga puja as the immersed materials do not decompose because of running water. So the chances of massive pollution is less,” Bhol further said.

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