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NEW DELHI: Pollution levels in NCR (National Capital Region) could be determined using sensor-based technology. Hopefully, by December 2019, sensors that can assess the amount of pollution caused by cars entering Delhi, will come into action. The sensor technology is currently in its testing space at the International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT) in Gurugram, Haryana.
ET Auto reports that the Supreme Court-governed Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) has asked to finish the study by as early as February. The results should be submitted in the same month as well.
In a meeting held earlier this week, ICAT informed the EPCA that the body has tested around 70,000 vehicles in NCR so far, and close to 1.75 lakh are remaining. The directions to carry out these trials were issued by the Supreme Court on May 10, 2018.
An average threshold point for both commercial and passenger vehicles are to be set in order to find which of them pollutes the most; thus allowing the concerned authorities to take action. It was initially planned to employ mobile vans to take action against such polluting vehicles.
Sunita Narain, member of EPCA and Director General at CSE (Centre for Science and Environment) shared, "The device can be deployed at Delhi borders so we can track polluting vehicles that are coming in. Once people are fined, there will be a sense of fear among the drivers to be more compliant."
The equipment can be shifted regularly to cover a wider area, so that in a short period of time, a good majority of violators could be caught and handed over to the authorities.
A similar system is being used in China for nearly a decade. Though its efficiency was already proven, the concerned officials stated that it is still difficult to point out a single highly-polluting vehicle from a large group entering a locality together.
Li Kunsheng, Director of Mobile Source Emission Management Division in Beijing stated, "In a day, only about 500 people or so are fined. Detecting high pollution vehicles from a particular vehicle also becomes challenging if they come in a group or if the exhaust pipes face in different directions."
Whether this will be more or less efficient in India is something which we have to wait and see.
Thoughts On The New Sensor-Based Pollution Calculation Method
Air pollution in New Delhi has become almost a national concern in the past few years. For the same reason, authorities are forced to introduce new and effective ways to clean up the air. The above-mentioned technology could make a difference, and EPCA feels that officials can also make use of RFID tags to control the flow of vehicles into the capital.