Speak about air pollution and the focus is on Delhi. Since last few years Delhi has been in news for the worst air pollution levels as recorded by the Center for Science and Environment. It is quite a dampener to know that the national capital stands at the 4th most heavily polluted city of the world. However, Kolkata is actually topping the charts at this time and won’t be long before it leaves Delhi behind in the race.
The yellow and black taxis ubiquitous to Kolkata, 99% run on diesel. Apart from this 65% of new vehicles in Kolkata are diesel driven and it is again 45% of total fuel consumption in Kolkata happens to be diesel. Kolkata now seems to have become the new diesel capital of the country. The population of Kolkata at present is inhaling very high level of polluted air with the government agencies not doing much or rather seems to be in denial. These alarming figures of air pollution was detected by the Center for Science and Environment using a state of art portable machine which recorded twice or even three times higher than the level of pollution recorded by the West Bengal Pollution Control Board. The reason being the pollution control board still relies on its manual stations reading located at four places namely Behala Chowrasta, Shyambazar, Minto park and Moulali as the city’s automatic stations have been non functional since past couple of months. The WBPCB declined to comment on these findings and were found mumbling about getting the data analyzed.
By: Madhuchanda Saxena