Friday, 20 October 2017

After cleaner ghats, Ganga at Varanasi to be pollution-free too

After cleaner ghats, Ganga at Varanasi to be pollution-free too
All who have been enjoying cleaner ghats at Varanasi would also soon bask in the pollution-free waters of the Ganges flowing by the spiritual city. Under Namami Gange programme, an all-encompassing approach has been employed to arrest pollution flowing into the river and ensure clean ghats. From sewage treatment plants to ghat improvement to river surface cleaning, several steps in a time-bound manner are being taken in Varanasi by National Mission for Clean Ganga to rid the city of river pollution.
On the sewage management front, Varanasi town currently generates an estimated 300 MLD of sewage, which is expected to increase to 390 MLD by 2030. From the current capacity of three existing sewage treatment plants – Dinapur, Bhagwanpur and DLW, only 102 MLD of sewage is being treated while the remaining flows directly into river Ganga through Varuna and Assi rivers. To bridge this gap, a 140 MLD STP at Dinapur and a 120 MLD STP at Goitha are being constructed under Japan International co-operation Agency (JICA) assisted project and JNNURM scheme respectively. These projects are at advanced stage of construction and will be commissioned before March 2018. Apart from this, a 50 MLD STP at Ramana has also been awarded under Hybrid Annuity based PPP model to exclusively address the sewage treatment requirements of Assi BHU area. Concession agreement for this project has already been signed. Together, these STPs will create sewage treatment capacity of 412 MLD, adequate to meet the sewage treatment demands of the town till 2035.
In addition, the works on interceptor sewers for rivers Varuna and Assi, development of three pumping stations at Chauka ghat, Phulwaria and Saraiya, rehabilitation of old trunk sewers and rehabilitation of ghat pumping stations and existing STPs are also underway to improve the entire sewage management infrastructure in Varanasi. Evidently, no stone is being left unturned.
To address the concerns of floating waste on the river, a trash skimmer is operational in Varanasi since April 2017 under river surface cleaning component.
A cleaner Ganga would be incomplete without equally cleaner surroundings. Acknowledging this, the Government of India last year initiated cleaning works at 84 iconic and heritage ghats of Varanasi under Namami Gange programme which has shown positive results.
Besides, works for construction of 153 community toilet complexes at an estimated cost of Rs 20.07 crore have been awarded out of which the works for 109 toilets have already been completed and they are being used by 15,000 to 20,000 people every day. Also, ghat improvement works at 26 locations have been taken up in addition to repairing works at as many identified locations. In a bid to arrest the pollution from cloth washing activities on ghats, four dhobi ghats – Pandeypur, Nadesar, Bhavania Pokhran and Konia - have already been renovated while construction of three other at Bazardiha, Machodari Slaughter House and Bhawania Pokhri (extension) is underway. Whereas several users of the dhobi community have shifted to the new ghats, many more are being pursued for the same.
In a nutshell, a focused and output-driven approach to make river Ganga pure in Varanasi has yielded results. The objective of Nirmal Ganga will now not remain just a dream for Varanasi city.

‘Air Quality in Delhi Better Compared to Last Year’: Dr. Harsh Vardhan ‘Need to Build a Social Movement to Combat Pollution’, Says Environment Minister

‘Air Quality in Delhi Better Compared to Last Year’: Dr. Harsh Vardhan

‘Need to Build a Social Movement to Combat Pollution’, Says Environment Minister
Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan has said that the air quality in Delhi has been better compared to last year. Speaking to a media agency here today, the Minister said that the number of ‘Good’, ‘Satisfactory’ and ‘Moderate’ days has increased and ‘Poor’ and ‘Very Poor’ category has reduced significantly compared to 2016. Emphasising the need to build a social movement to combat pollution, Dr. Harsh Vardhan has appealed to the citizens to individually and collectively, undertake one good, green deed every day. 

The Minister also said that he has held meetings with officers from the states of National Capital Region (NCR) on stubble burning. He added that efforts are being made to provide farmers with an alternative to burning, so that farmers can create wealth from waste. Dr. Harsh Vardhan also reiterated that scientists have been asked to develop zero pollution crackers to tackle pollution. 

The year 2017 has seen positive changes with respect to air pollution in Delhi due to a number of steps taken by Union Government, State Governments and Government of Delhi. The Centre has been closely involved in management of air pollution in Delhi and NCR, besides other cities in the country. 

A comparison of the air quality until this period with last year shows positive changes in air quality levels. The year 2017 has seen few ‘Good’ days (AQI <50) this year unlike last year, when there were no ‘Good’ days. Number of ‘Satisfactory’ days (AQI between 51 and 100) up to October 19 has nearly doubled. The number of ‘Moderate’ days (AQI between 101 and 200) has increased by nearly 22%. Number of ‘Poor’ days has nearly declined by 10% (AQI between 201 and 300). The number of ‘Very Poor’ days has declined by nearly 30% (AQI between 301 and 400). There has been no ‘Severe’ day (AQI >400) in 2017, as against 7 during the same period in 2016. The air quality has been significantly better this year than last year during Diwali. AQI on Diwali and post-Diwali day was 426 and 425, respectively last year and it has been 326 and 367 this year. Also, there has neither been smog, as was the case last year post-Diwali, nor has there been an Emergency-plus situation. 

A number of other measures have been taken to improve air quality in the Delhi NCR region. These include control and mitigation measures related to vehicular emissions, re-suspension of road dust and other fugitive emissions, bio-mass/municipal solid waste burning, industrial pollution, construction and demolition activities and installation of online continuous (24X7) monitoring devices by major industries. The Union Government is working closely with State Governments, CPCB, SPCBs and EPCA. Government has notified Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) for control of air pollution. CPCB has also issued a comprehensive 42 point action plan to mitigate air pollution. 

In order to involve people in the effort, Government had launched a campaign called ‘Harit Diwali and Swasth Diwali’ involving over 2000 schools in Delhi and over two lakh schools in the country. The Government had also organised a Mini-Marathon for‘SwachhHawa for Swachh and Swasth Bharat’ on October 15, 2017 at India Gate, in which nearly 15,000 school children participated. 

All stakeholders including State Governments and general public specially school children, who have been at the forefront of the campaign for clean air, have made a significant contribution, resulting in the positive changes. The Government will continue to work with all the stakeholders to ensure better air quality. 

Thursday, 19 October 2017

What is Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2)?

What is Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2)?


NO2 is a reddish brown gas that is emitted from all combustion engines. There are two main nitrogen based compounds that are emitted from combustion engines: NO2 and nitric oxide (NO). Collectively these two pollutants are referred to as NOx or oxides of nitrogen.

Figure 1 Simplified cycle of NO and NO2
To summurize:
  • NO2: Nitrogen Dioxyde
  • NO: Nitric Dioxyde
  • NOx: Oxides of Nitrogen = {NO2+NO}

NO2 life-cycle


At the point of emission (i.e. the exhaust pipe), the proportion of NOx is around 90% NO and 10% NO2 (1).
After a few hours in the atmosphere and in the presence of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) the NO is converted to NO2. This reaction can occur over a couple of seconds to a few hours (2).
NO2 reacts further with other substances in the air to form nitric acid, particulate matter and substances called PANs (peroxyacyl nitrates).
Also with sunlight NO2 can convert back to NO and produce ozone (O3) as a side pollutant. Because of the potential of NO2 to produce these "secondary" pollutants it is important to monitor and regulate NO2.

How does NO2 affect me?


Short and long term exposure to NO2 has been linked with an increased risk of respiratory problems. People with asthma, young children and older adults have an increased sensitivity to its effects (1).The secondary pollutants caused by the presence of NO2 in the atmosphere also have their own adverse effects. PANs are an irritant, nitric acid causes acid rain and particulate matter and O3 cause respiratory problems.

Who and what is emitting NOx?


As previously mentioned, NOx emissions comes from combustion engines. But what is happening in these engines is the high temperature reaction of hydrocarbons in the fossil fuel with air (which is 80% nitrogen). There are also natural sources of NOx emissions such as wildfires, lightning strikes but the vast majority of NO2 in the atmosphere is caused by human activity.

Figure 2 Sources of NOx emissions in the USA – 2014
There are many different industries which emit NOx. The figure (2) shows sources of NOx emissions in the USA measured in 2014. The "mobile sources", i.e. road vehicles, boats, airplanes, farm vehicles etc, are easily the greatest contributor. In the USA and Europe, road vehicles are the main type of ‘mobile source’ of NOx (1) (3).
In areas where road vehicles are the main source of NOx there is often higher NO2concentrations during peak traffic times such as around 5pm weekdays shown in the NO2 AQI below. Some additonal interresting notes:
  • The ozone (O3) concentration increases during the day while the NO2concentration decreases. That's because NO2 transforms to NOx in the presence of sunlight.
  • After 6 PM, the NO2 concentration builds up as there is no sunlight to convert NO2 back to NO.

Figure 3 Example of AQI in London
In China, however a study conducted in 2013 found that industrial sources are the biggest (34% of the total) emitters of NOx(4). This is why there is no strong link with NO2 concentrations and rush hour traffic.

Why are NO2 concentration so low?


The NO2 AQI is usually in the ‘Good’ range and shown in green. But because NO2 is converted to other pollutants which have their own negative effects the NO2 in the atmosphere still negatively affects our health and environment. If you would like a more detailed explanation into NOx in our atmosphere have a look through these documents below.

Sunday, October 22nd, 2:00
Sunday, October 22nd, 2:00
3000 km
2000 mi

References and Further Reading


1. Office of Research and Development National Center for Environmental Assessment. Integrated science assessment for oxides of nitrogen - Health criteria. North Carolina : United States Enivronmental Protection Authority, 2016. EPA/600/R-15/068.
2. Cheremisinoff, Paul N and Young, Richard Alan. Air Pollution Control and Design Handbook. s.l. : M Dekker, 1977. pp. 672-673. Vol. 2.
3. Urban Air Quality in Europe. Boulter, P G, Borken-Kleefeld, J and Ntziachristos, L. [ed.] M Vianna. Berlin Heidelberg : Springer-Verlag, 2013, Handbook of Environmental Chemistry, Vol. 26, pp. 31-54.
4. NOx emissions in China: historical trends and future perspectives. Zhao, B, et al. 13, 2013, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, pp. 9869-9897.


About the Air Quality and Pollution Measurement:

About the Air Quality and Pollution Measurement:

About the Air Quality Levels

AQIAir Pollution LevelHealth ImplicationsCautionary Statement (for PM2.5)
0 - 50GoodAir quality is considered satisfactory, and air pollution poses little or no riskNone
51 -100ModerateAir quality is acceptable; however, for some pollutants there may be a moderate health concern for a very small number of people who are unusually sensitive to air pollution.Active children and adults, and people with respiratory disease, such as asthma, should limit prolonged outdoor exertion.
101-150Unhealthy for Sensitive GroupsMembers of sensitive groups may experience health effects. The general public is not likely to be affected.Active children and adults, and people with respiratory disease, such as asthma, should limit prolonged outdoor exertion.
151-200UnhealthyEveryone may begin to experience health effects; members of sensitive groups may experience more serious health effectsActive children and adults, and people with respiratory disease, such as asthma, should avoid prolonged outdoor exertion; everyone else, especially children, should limit prolonged outdoor exertion
201-300Very UnhealthyHealth warnings of emergency conditions. The entire population is more likely to be affected.Active children and adults, and people with respiratory disease, such as asthma, should avoid all outdoor exertion; everyone else, especially children, should limit outdoor exertion.
300+HazardousHealth alert: everyone may experience more serious health effectsEveryone should avoid all outdoor exertion

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Local Weather Report and Forecast For: Kakinada Dated :Oct 19, 2017






Local Weather Report and Forecast For: Kakinada    Dated :Oct 19, 2017
Kakinada
Past 24 Hours Weather Data
Maximum Temp(oC) (Recorded on 18/10/17)28.1
Departure from Normal(oC)-4
Minimum Temp (oC) (Recorded. on 19/10/17)25.6
Departure from Normal(oC)1
24 Hours Rainfall (mm) (Recorded from 0830 hrs IST
of yesterday to 0830 hrs IST of today)
NIL
Relative Humidity at 0830 hrs (%)80
Relative Humidity at 1730 hrs (%) (Recorded on 18/10/17)81
Todays Sunset (IST)17:37
Tommorows Sunrise (IST)05:55
Moonset (IST)17:33
Moonrise (IST)05:21
7 Day's Forecast
DateMin TempMax TempWeather
19-Oct26.028.0Generally cloudy sky with Light Rain or Drizzle
20-Oct26.028.0Rain or thundershowers would occur towards afternoon or evening
21-Oct24.026.0Generally cloudy sky with moderate rain
22-Oct24.026.0Generally cloudy sky with moderate rain
23-Oct24.028.0Generally cloudy sky with moderate rain
24-Oct23.028.0Rain
25-Oct23.028.0Rain

















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अयोध्या अपने पुराने वैभव की और। आज #DiwaliInAyodhya के कुछ मनमोहन सुंदर और आकर्षक दृष्य।






















Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Local Weather Report and Forecast For: Kakinada Dated :Oct 17, 2017 and Hourly Forecast for Today, Wednesday 10/18







Local Weather Report and Forecast For: Kakinada    Dated :Oct 17, 2017
Kakinada
Past 24 Hours Weather Data
Maximum Temp(oC) (Recorded. on 17/10/17)35.4
Departure from Normal(oC)3
Minimum Temp (oC) (Recorded. on 17/10/17)25.2
Departure from Normal(oC)0
24 Hours Rainfall (mm) (Recorded from 0830 hrs IST
of yesterday to 0830 hrs IST of today)
NIL
Relative Humidity at 0830 hrs (%)76
Relative Humidity at 1730 hrs (%) (Recorded. on 17/10/17)59
Todays Sunset (IST)17:38
Tommorows Sunrise (IST)05:55
Moonset (IST)16:12
Moonrise (IST)03:36
7 Day's Forecast
DateMin TempMax TempWeather
17-Oct25.034.0Generally cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers
18-Oct26.034.0Generally cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers
19-Oct25.033.0Generally cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers
20-Oct25.033.0Generally cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers
21-Oct24.032.0Generally cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers
22-Oct24.031.0Generally cloudy sky with possibility of rain or Thunderstorm
23-Oct24.031.0Generally cloudy sky with possibility of rain or Thunderstorm





Tuesday, October 17, 2017


ActualAverageRecord
Temperature
Mean Temperature30 °C-
Max Temperature35 °C-- ()
Min Temperature25 °C-- ()
Cooling Degree Days21
Growing Degree Days36 (Base 50)
Moisture
Dew Point22 °C
Average Humidity58
Maximum Humidity80
Minimum Humidity36
Precipitation
Precipitation0.0 mm-- ()
Sea Level Pressure
Sea Level Pressure1004.00 hPa
Wind
Wind Speed0 km/h ()
Max Wind Speed0 km/h
Max Gust Speed-
Visibility7.0 kilometers
Events
T = Trace of Precipitation, MM = Missing ValueSource: Averaged Metar Reports





6:00 am
Partly Cloudy Partly Cloudy
74 °F
74 °F
50%
65 °F
72%
0 mph NW
29.68 in
7:00 am
Partly Cloudy Partly Cloudy
77 °F
77 °F
49%
66 °F
68%
1 mph NW
29.70 in
8:00 am
Partly Cloudy Partly Cloudy
82 °F
86 °F
50%
68 °F
62%
2 mph NW
29.72 in
9:00 am
Partly Cloudy Partly Cloudy
86 °F
90 °F
48%
69 °F
57%
3 mph NW
29.71 in
10:00 am
Partly Cloudy Partly Cloudy
90 °F
98 °F
47%
72 °F
55%
5 mph NW
29.70 in
11:00 am
Partly Cloudy Partly Cloudy
92 °F
100 °F
48%
70 °F
49%
4 mph WNW
29.68 in
12:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
94 °F
102 °F
61%
70 °F
46%
3 mph W
29.65 in
1:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
94 °F
101 °F
67%
69 °F
45%
4 mph S
29.62 in
2:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
92 °F
99 °F
67%
69 °F
47%
5 mph SE
29.60 in
3:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
90 °F
98 °F
69%
71 °F
54%
5 mph SE
29.59 in
4:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
87 °F
95 °F
67%
72 °F
61%
5 mph SSE
29.59 in
5:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
85 °F
92 °F
65%
73 °F
66%
5 mph S
29.61 in
6:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
84 °F
91 °F
68%
74 °F
72%
5 mph S
29.63 in
7:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
83 °F
91 °F
69%
74 °F
75%
4 mph S
29.65 in
8:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
83 °F
91 °F
73%
75 °F
77%
3 mph SSW
29.67 in
9:00 pm
Mostly Cloudy Mostly Cloudy
83 °F
90 °F
76%
75 °F
78%
3 mph WSW
29.67 in
10:00 pm
Cloudy Cloudy
82 °F
89 °F
82%
74 °F
77%
3 mph W
29.67 in
11:00 pm
Cloudy Cloudy
81 °F
88 °F
84%
73 °F
77%
4 mph WNW
29.65 in