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Air pollution rising faster in south than in Gangetic India

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    27th Nov, 2020


  • A study commissioned by Central Pollution Control Board has found that the rate of increase in pollution levels in southern and eastern India is far greater than the Gangetic plain between 2000 and 2019.

Key findings

  • Fine particulate matter – or PM2.5 – is a major pollutant affecting the environment,human health and the climate.
  • Between 2000 and 2010, PM2.5 over India showed a significant increase overJharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala,and parts of Karnataka, Maharashtra and the Northeast.
  • While it decreased overJ&K (including Ladakh), Himachal Pradesh, and the desert region.
  • A steady air pollution rise in rural India is dueto high reliance on solid fuel for domestic use.

What are the reasons behind the increment?

  • In Odisha and Chhattisgarh, this is due to mining activities and thermalcoal power plants.
  • In southern India, high urbanisation in and around citiessuch as Bengaluru or Hyderabad has led to increased emissions.
  • Un-favourable meteorological conditions in eastern and peninsular India.
  • Increase in emissions has led to higher pollution

How could it overcome?

  • Since the household sources contribute more than 50% to ambient PM2.5 in rural areas, successful implementation of PMUY with sustained usage should arrest or even reverse the increasing trend in rural areas.

Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY)

  • The Government has launched “Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana”(PMUY) for providing LPG connections to 5 crore women belonging to the Below Poverty Line (BPL) families over a period of 3 years starting from FY 2016-17.

Objective of the scheme

  • To provide clean cooking fuel solution to poor households especially in rural areas.
  • Use of LPG as a cooking fuel helps in effectively addressing health hazards associated with the use of conventional sources of cooking fuels.

The Salient features of the PMUY Scheme

  • LPG connection is released in the name of adult woman of the BPL family, subject to the condition that no LPG connection exists in the name of any family member of the household.
  • Eligible families are identified through the Socio Economic Caste Census (SECC) list.
  • The scheme covers the cash assistance upto Rs 1600/- for providing new LPG connection and this cash assistance is provided by the Central Government.
  • The customer bears the cost of Hot Plate and purchase of first refill. The customers have option to take Hot Plate on purchase of first refill or both on loan basis from OMCs at zero interest and the same is recovered through EMIs.

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