IIT Delhi rope in US experts to discuss city’s worsening air quality

IIT Delhi rope in US experts to discuss city’s worsening air quality
atul.krishna | Jun 26, 2019 - 1:11 p.m. IST
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NEW DELHI, JUNE 26: IIT Delhi’s Centre of Excellence for Research on Clean Air (CERCA), in association with the Embassy of the United States of America, New Delhi, organised a workshop to discuss solutions to mitigate Delhi’s poor air quality.

The workshop acted as a platform for experts from different fields to deliberate on the growing hazard of air pollution. The panel of experts included United States Science Envoy Dr James Schauer and Deputy Secretary of Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Satyendra Kumar, among other professionals from corporates, NGOs, and academics.

Pertinent issues such as crop stubble burning, vehicular pollution, dust pollution, etc., came to the fore during the discussions. Talking about the importance of knowledge sharing on such critical issues, Dr James said “We have been working on the PM2.5 problem in the US for over 25 years and we have had success both from the management side and also from the scientific side and I think it is very interesting for me to be sharing experiences. Obviously, everything is not the same with the U.S and India but there are many things that we can share from a technology point-of-view.“

With the capital reeling under hazardous air quality and related health problems, the role of CERCA also becomes prominent.“To explain the basic mission of CERCA is to provide research and scientific knowledge to policymakers in formulating the policy as well as providing them with feedback on how well those policy measures are working based on scientific research,” said Arun Duggal, Founder of CERCA.

Currently, CERCA is working on four research projects with regard to air quality in India. One project is studying the implementation experiences with regard to curbing air pollution in countries like Japan and China. Two other projects focus on using machine learning and other technologies to improve air quality forecasting. A fourth project looks into limiting the three critical sources of air pollution in stubble burning, powerplants and brick kilns.

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