Construction Boom and Diwali Celebrations Push Pune’s Air Quality to Hazardous Levels, PMC Plans Corrective Measures

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Varad Bhatkhande

Pune, 15th November 2023: In a concerning turn of events, Pune is the latest Indian city grappling with a severe deterioration in air quality after Delhi and Mumbai. The air quality index (AQI) has surged to 263 from 150 in the past two weeks, prompting immediate action from the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC).

The spike in air pollution has been attributed to a combination of factors, including increased construction activities and the recent Diwali celebrations, where a significant number of firecrackers were burst, contributing to elevated levels of carbon emissions and noise pollution.

The PMC has swiftly initiated measures to combat the escalating air pollution crisis. Notices have been issued to construction professionals and the metro administration, following the directives of the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB). The municipal corporation is actively gathering information about measures taken by workplaces to prevent dust pollution.

To address pollution in crowded areas, the PMC is set to install mist-based fountains, aiming to mitigate the impact of particulate matter. Additionally, a comprehensive plan is reportedly in the works to implement various measures aimed at improving overall air quality in the city.

The aftermath of Diwali has exacerbated the situation, with the widespread use of firecrackers during Lakshmi Pujan and Narak Chaturdashi. The chemicals released during these celebrations have contributed significantly to the alarming increase in carbon emissions and noise pollution.

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Health experts warn of the potential health hazards posed by the current air quality levels. Residents are advised to take necessary precautions and adhere to safety guidelines provided by authorities. The PMC urges citizens to cooperate in the implementation of measures to curb air pollution and work towards restoring Pune’s air quality to safer levels. The situation remains under close scrutiny as authorities continue to monitor and respond to the evolving crisis.