|2||Tiruppur, Tamil Nadu|
|5||Chakapara, West Bengal|
|6||Jaunpur, Uttar Pradesh|
|8||Bewar, Uttar Pradesh|
(local time)SEE WORLD AQI RANKING
|1||3rd Cross Road 2|
|2||S.G. Halli KSPCB|
|4||Hennur Bagalur Road|
|5||1st Cross Road|
|6||3rd Cross Road|
|7||D Rajgopal Road|
|9||3rd Main Road|
(local time)SEE WORLD AQI RANKING
live AQI index
|Air pollution level||Air quality index||Main pollutant|
|Moderate|| 55 US AQI||PM2.5|
|PM2.5|| 13.9 µg/m³|
PM2.5 concentration in Bengaluru air is currently 1 times above the WHO annual air quality guideline value
|Close your windows to avoid dirty outdoor air|
|Sensitive groups should reduce outdoor exercise|
|Monday, Sep 20|
Moderate 81 US AQI
|Tuesday, Sep 21|
Moderate 57 US AQI
|Wednesday, Sep 22|
Moderate 52 US AQI
Moderate 55 US AQI
|Friday, Sep 24|
Good 49 US AQI
|Saturday, Sep 25|
Good 41 US AQI
|Sunday, Sep 26|
Good 46 US AQI
|Monday, Sep 27|
Good 45 US AQI
|Tuesday, Sep 28|
Good 50 US AQI
|Wednesday, Sep 29|
Moderate 58 US AQI
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Bengaluru, otherwise known as Bangalore, is the capital city of the state of Karnataka. It comes in ranked at 82nd of the most polluted cities in India, with a 2019 PM2.5 rating of 32.6 µg/m³. PM2.5 stands for particulate matter that is 2.5 or less micrometers across, and consists of many chemicals or compounds that can have a multitude of negative effects on the health of anyone who breathes it in.
With an average PM2.5 reading of 32.6 µg/m³, it is placed in the ‘moderate’ bracket for how polluted a cities air is. For a city to be classed in the moderate bracket requires a PM2.5 rating of 12.1 to 35.4µg/m³, and as such the classification would show that whilst Bangalore does not suffer from the same levels of poor air quality that highly polluted Indian cities such as Delhi do, it could certainly stand to improve the quality of air that its citizens breathe. It comes in at 361st place in regards to the most polluted cities in the world, with many of its months recorded in 2019 coming in at a moderate rating, five of them coming in a an ‘unhealthy for sensitive groups’ rating, and one month coming in at ‘unhealthy’, which would require a reading of anywhere between 55.5 to 150.4 µg/m³ on the PM2.5 ranking, making it considerably more polluted during certain months, that would require a large number of people to be wary of the air they are breathing during these poorly ranked months, with demographics such as the young, elderly and those with preexisting medical conditions being at highest risk.
Like many of the cities in India, Bangalore finds the main sources of its pollution coming from the roads. This encompasses the numerous cars and buses that use the road, as well as ‘road dust’ itself that is blown up into the atmosphere as the vehicles pass over it, this dust consisting of accumulated soot and other fine particulate matter that accumulates from exhaust fumes and dirt particles blown in from surrounding areas. As the 3rd most populous city in India, one would expect that with such a large population comes an extremely large number of vehicles, and as such the emissions would be of a very high quantity.
Many of these vehicles end up falling far below the quality control standards that you may find in countries such as America or Australia. Diesel is still used as a fuel for a large number of cars and motorbikes, which in itself would emit far more pollution than other cleaner fuels available. The use of diesel in combination with the outdated engines found in many of the older trucks and cars would lead to the creation of black carbon (BC), a form of carbon that is the primary component of soot, created by the incomplete combustion of fossil fuels (as well as organic matter such as crops or organic refuse). This can combine with many other chemicals that are produced from vehicular emissions, such as Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) and Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) as well as Ozone (O3) to create a multitude of pollutants with many detrimental effects on health.
Many cities in India, including Bangalore, still have a ways to go in terms of the effectively cracking down on the removal of poor quality cars and buses, as well lacking certain initiatives to get people using public transport and relying less on personal vehicle usage, despite Bangalore being well known as having some of the more efficient and effective public transport systems in India. To further compound the situation, the city would not find the same harsh charges in regards to parking or not obeying certain road rules, which has been proven to be effective in reducing vehicle usage in countries where they are implemented properly.
So, with cars and other vehicles being stated as the main culprit in the production of air pollution and high numbers of PM2.5, the other main offender would appear to be the construction industry. The construction industry would create high amounts of pollutants, via the production of its needed components that are factory made on a high industrial scale, as well as putting out metric tons of dust into the air from construction sites, consisting of fine particles of metals, plastics as well as dust from concrete and other similar materials. These would all contribute highly to the Poor US AQI ratings as well as the high levels of PM2.5 found in the air.
As previously mentioned, Bangalore comes in at 82nd place out of all cities ranked in India, and as such it does not have air quality that is as hazardous or outright disastrous to its citizens health when compared to heavily polluted cities such as Ghaziabad, which not only takes the 1st place out of all cities in India in regards to its 2019 PM2.5 rating, but comes in at the same year with readings of 110.2 µg/m³, giving it a rating that is nearly 3 and a half times more polluted than Bangalores reading of 32.6 µg/m³.
Whilst the air pollution is nowhere near perfect by any means, with many of its recorded months having potential negative health effects on its citizens, its ranking as the 3rd most populous city in the whole of India makes its 82nd placing in terms of pollution levels seem more respectable, with an improvement on 2018’s average reading of 34.5 µg/m³. The multitude of parks and other green areas could help with its relatively low rating, with a nickname of ‘the garden city of India’ giving credence to why the air is of moderate quality despite being so heavily populated. However, the city is coming under increasing scrutiny by authorities to try and clamp down on offending sources and improve the quality of its air, thereby pushing it to an even better ranking in following years.
City authorities are taking numerous steps to reduce the levels of haze and smoke found in the air, with on the ground interpersonal methods such as educating people of the health consequences of polluted air, as well as requesting its citizens to reduce the number of fires they produce, particularly in regards to the burning of garbage and other refuse, even going so far as to ask people to limit the number of blazes created or fireworks set off during religious festivals, with Diwali being of considerable concern due to its high usage of fireworks, which on a side note has far reaching effects beyond adding to the air pollution, with many cases of firework related injuries being reported in cities across India during the festival.
Authorities have also made it been known to its citizens that they can report vehicles on the road if they are seen to be putting out too much thick black smoke, once again counting on the individuals to step together to make a difference. A local operating organization known as Clean Air Platform (CAP) has asked people to make sure they get their vehicles checked on their pollution output regularly, and if it doesn’t pass the quality control standard, to make sure they get the vehicle appropriately serviced. Other initiatives include the push for more people to use public transport and rely less on using cars to get around.
The health effects of living in a city with polluted air are numerous, with a large number of studies already having been conducted on the effects of exposure to PM2.5 and PM10, with both short- and long-term health effects being well documented.
Exposure to these fine particle matter, particularly during the worst months such as January (with its unhealthy reading of 57.8 µg/m³ being recorded in the 2019) would include effects such as irritation to the airways, along with the eyes and skin, and an increase in the risk of conditions including but not limited to bronchitis, emphysema, respiratory infections and a reduction in overall lung function, and in worse case scenarios an increase in events of lung cancers.
The small size of PM2.5 would allow it to enter deep into the body via the circulatory system and cause a number of issues such as increased risks of heart attacks, chronic forms of heart disease and arrythmias. These are certainly not conditions to be taken lightly, and with certain demographics of the population being particularly vulnerable to air pollution during the worst months, use of air quality maps to see regularly updated information may be highly useful, as available on the IQAir website, as well as the Visual Air app that allows for one to keep track of air quality wherever they may be. For further protection during times of elevated PM2.5, besides staying indoors and avoiding outdoor activities, the Purchase of higher quality masks may be of great help, as available from the on-site store.
Data sources 7