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TSRTC strike makes Hyderabad air pollution rise as people forced to use personal vehicles

The concentration of pollutants remained higher than the average values on Sunday and Monday as well, indicating the importance of public transport in keeping the air quality from deteriorating.

Published: 08th October 2019 04:25 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th October 2019 04:25 AM   |  A+A-

Hyderabad traffic

Image used for representational purpose (File Photo | EPS)

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: Hyderabad’s air quality has declined since the strike by RTC employees began, with people forced to rely on personal mode of transport. RTC buses are the most important mode of public transport in the city, ferrying almost 35-45 lakh passengers every day in the Greater Hyderabad limits.
Air quality data for various pollutants from September 1 to October 7 showed a marked rise in the concentrations of various pollutants on Saturday — when the RTC employees went on a strike — at all locations where the Pollution Control Board installed real-time air-quality monitoring stations.

The concentration of pollutants remained higher than the average values on Sunday and Monday as well, indicating the importance of public transport in keeping the air quality from deteriorating.

For example, the 24-hour concentration of PM2.5 which did not cross 50 micrograms per meter cube (ug/m3) in the month of September and remained between 10-30ug/m3 for most of the month. However on Saturday, the day RTC strike started, its 24-hour concentration peaked to 60ug/m3, on Sunday it was 48ug/m3, and on Monday, it was 63ug/m3.

Another example is that of the Air Quality Index (AQI) of Sanathnagar, which rarely crossed 100 in September, remaining in the ‘Satisfactory’ category but on Sunday, it shot up to 105, and on Monday it was 139, remaining in the ‘Moderate’ air quality on both these days.

Though the government is trying to fill the void in the availability of buses by utilising the services of private persons as drivers and conductors in view of the strike, in Hyderabad, only 545 of the 2,034 buses could be pressed into service on Monday.

Air Quality Index shoots up to 139
The Air Quality Index (AQI) of Sanathnagar, which rarely crossed 100 in September, and remained in the ‘Satisfactory’ category but on Sunday, a day after the RTC strike started, it shot up to 105, and on Monday it was 139, remaining in the ‘Moderate’ air quality category on both these days

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