Throughout the year, Patna, the capital city of Bihar did not see even a single 'good' air quality day, from the reports released by the Center for Environment and Energy Development (CEED).
The data available with the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) for Patna shows that 48 per cent of the total days had either "moderate" or "satisfactory" air quality, while the remaining 52 per cent saw "poor" or "severe" quality of air.
‘The government of Bihar should implement emergency measures to reduce the hazardous health impact arising due to severe air pollution.’
As per the findings, based on data from the real-time air quality monitoring station in Patna, the city in the month of December witnessed the worst air when 51 per cent days had air quality in "severe" category.
According to the health index of the government of India, a prolonged exposure to this level of pollution is hazardous, even for healthy people.
Out of the cities where Air Quality Index (AQI) bulletin is issued by the CPCB, Patna in December 2018 remained the most polluted city of India.
CEED CEO Ramapati Kumar has urged the government of Bihar to immediately implement emergency measures to reduce the level of pollution in Patna.
"In case of similar pollution level in Delhi, Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) is implemented, and I see no reason as why the government of Bihar can't do the same in Patna...it is a matter of health and lives of people of the state."
Ankita Jyoti, Senior Program Officer, CEED, said: "First of all, we must be clear that air pollution is not a seasonal affair and we need round-the-year action. While nothing can be done to control the weather or to remove trapped emissions, short-term measures can control further loading of emissions and prevent higher smog peaks and exposure. In the longer term, Clean Air Action Plan is required to permanently reduce emissions, while GRAP-like measures should serve as an emergency response plan to rising pollution."
"As an immediate response to health impacts attributed to the worsening air pollution levels, the government must develop a GRAP here and start issuing health advisory. CEED urges the government to take concrete measures to improve the air quality," Jyoti added