May 12, 2012 at 08:52am IST

Check local pollution online

HYDERABAD:  In a new initiative, the Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board (APPCB), on the instructions of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), is contemplating to make raw data and analysis related to air quality and noise pollution levels in different parts of the city available to the public through its website -- “The process is in its last stages and within three months, it may be available for the public. Currently, it is password protected for tests,” informed Dr P Ramesh Chandra, senior environmental scientist, central laboratory, APPCB.
Apart from this, the APPCB has also decided to add four more Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Systems (CAAQMS) across the city in addition to the existing one at the Paryavarana Bhavan at Sanath Nagar. “The CAAQMS records and updates air quality levels at the specific centres every 10 minutes. The monthly average and peak figures could also be derived. Each such system costs over Rs 1 crore and has a capacity radius of 5 km each,” said the senior scientist.
Towards generating a comprehensive data and thereby, assessing the pollution levels, the board has also decided to set up five more digital noise pollution monitors in the city. According to officials, the locations identified are Secunderabad, Tarnaka,  Kazipalli industrial area, Gachibowli and Banjara Hills.
“The monitoring systems will be installed with the help of CPCB on a 50-50 sharing basis. Each of such monitoring stations would cost over Rs 50 lakh,” informed the official. Early last year, the board had installed five such devices at Jeedimetla, Panjagutta, Abids, Jubilee Hills and Zoo Park and have been successfully recording real-time noise levels in the city.
“We get a holistic view of pollution through the CAAQMS and digital noise pollution monitoring devices, which gets updated every 10 minutes. Though the basic purpose of collecting such details and comparing with the set standards is to help government make policy decisions, by making it open and available to the public, we intend to spread awareness,” explained Dr Chandra. The digital displays set up at all the existing centres would give real-time figures for the citizens, he added.