|1||IGSC Planetarium Complex, Patna - BSPCB|
|1||IGSC Planetarium Complex, Patna - BSPCB|
Get an AirVisual Outdoor and contribute to collecting millions of data points for the Patna map to track local air pollution
When the air quality map for Patna is first opened, the viewer will see an overall dark red hue to the background and several circles over the city itself. These circles or discs show the location of the various ground monitoring stations in the vicinity. You will notice they can be different colours and have a number on them. This number is the US AQI reading which is a standard set of metrics endorsed by the World Health Organisation (WHO). It is used when comparing the air quality in different cities and is calculated by measuring six of the most prolific pollutants.
The significance of the colours of the discs is explained in the legend at the foot of the screen. The colours range from pale green for good air quality through yellow, orange and red to purple and maroon which indicates hazardous air quality.
When the map is expanded, the overlapping discs will start to separate and will become easier to see. Local people who know the area may understand why some areas have poorer air quality than others. They may be industrial zones or perhaps home to a power plant or some other large production unit.
The location of any wildfires is also indicated on the map which, together with the wind direction symbols will give a good indication as to whether or not the city will be affected by the smoke given off by them.
When viewed at full screen, a table will appear towards the right-hand side of the screen which is a table displaying the ranks of other cities across the world, so interesting comparisons can be made.
On the left-hand side of the screen, the viewer can access the location of the air monitors, wildfires in the vicinity, the air quality and the direction of the prevailing winds.
When the main city page for Patna is selected, the air pollution map can be found from there. Once selected, a new page will open up which is dedicated to air pollution over the city. However, when the two pages are both consulted, there is a lot of useful information available about the city of Patna.
During the second quarter of 2022, Patna was experiencing a period of air quality classified as being “Unhealthy for sensitive groups” with a US AQI reading of 126. Four of the most prolific pollutants were measured but the benchmark pollutant is usually PM2.5 which had a level measured as being 45.8 µg/m³. This figure is over nine times the target level of 5 µg/m³, as recommended by the WHO.
Further down the page is a forecast of air quality for the forthcoming days. This will be very useful if you are planning any trips to other parts of the city.
The most polluted areas of Patna are indicated by the high numbers on the coloured discs which can be seen over the city and its environs. The higher the number means the worse the air quality. Once the map is expanded and the overlapping discs separate, there is one disc in the dark maroon colour which we know is the worst for air pollution. This category is classified as being “Hazardous”.
Further down the page is listed all the stations and it shows how many people follow them and will be alerted to any major changes. It would appear that there is only one contributing station in Patna and it is located at the IGSC Planetarium Complex and has over thirty thousand followers.
The information shown on the air quality map for Patna does not directly identify the source of the pollution. Local residents may recognise the areas of worst pollution as industrial zones or power plants. Dust from roads, exhaust fumes from vehicles, smoke from kitchens, smoke due to the burning of garbage in the open and smoke from factories have been cited as the major sources of air pollution in Patna.
In 2019 the local authorities launched a scheme aimed at reducing air pollution in Patna. Under the scheme, suggestions like keeping vehicles older than 15 years off the road, promoting e-rickshaws, planting trees and using CNG-LPG gas were suggested. The scheme will run until 2024. Most of the auto rickshaws in Bihar are running on petrol or diesel while they should start running on CNG. CNG is also a cheaper fuel so that should be encouragement for the drivers to change.
A senior official of the Bihar State Pollution Control Board says that a lot of pollution is spread in Bihar due to brick-making plants. There are 6000 such plants in Bihar. Specific instructions have been given to brick plants to make chimneys which should reduce pollution. Apart from this, the work of making bricks from fly ash is also going on fast. Bihar currently has 250 fly ash brick making plants which are a major source of pollution.
Due to the increasing number of vehicles and the decreasing number of trees, the type and intensity of pollution is increasing every year. Air pollution reaches very dangerous levels in cities like Patna. The reason for this is PM2.5 and PM10 particles present in the air. These particles cause great harm to everyone's health. When the level of these particles increases in the air, then difficulty in breathing, burning in the eyes etc.
PM is also called particulate matter or particle pollution, which is a mixture of solid particles and liquid droplets present in the atmosphere. The particles present in the air are so small that you cannot even see with the naked eye. Some particles are so small that they can only be detected using an electron microscope. Particle pollution includes PM2.5 and PM10 which are very dangerous.