Plastic Burning Main Reason Behind Visibility Reduction Over Delhi: IIT Madras Study

Plastic Burning Main Reason Behind Visibility Reduction Over Delhi: IIT Madras Study

The study, published in the journal Nature Geoscience, may help develop better policies to improve the air quality and visibility in North India, say experts
Air Pollution, News, Plastic Waste
- in Air Pollution, News, Plastic Waste
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Plastic Burning Main Reason Behind Visibility Reduction Over Delhi: IIT Madras StudyAccording to a new study, due to plastic burning, chloride-rich particles make up highest inorganic fraction in particulate matter that cause air pollution
Highlights
  • Visibility reduction in Delhi caused by hydrochloric acid emissions: Study
  • Earlier studies show PM2.5 is major pollutant responsible for fog: Experts
  • Plastic-contained waste burning emit highly toxic chemicals: Study

New Delhi: Chloride-rich particles resulting from plastic burning may be primarily responsible for haze and fog formation in Northern India, including Delhi, during the winter months, according to an international study led by researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras. The study, published in the journal Nature Geoscience, may help develop better policies to improve the air quality and visibility in North India. Many studies in the past have identified particulate matter or aerosol particles with diameter less than 2.5 micrometre (PM2.5) as a major pollutant, responsible for haze and fog formation over Indo-Gangetic plain, including Delhi.

Also Read: Air Pollution Linked To Increased Risk Of Irreversible Vision Loss: Study

However, the role of PM2.5 and detailed chemistry of haze and fog formation over national capital was poorly understood. The new study found that chloride-rich particles were the highest inorganic fraction in particulate matter, primarily responsible for haze and fog formation in the region.

We realised that despite absolute PM2.5 mass burden over Delhi being much less than other polluted megacities around the world, including Beijing, the pollution and atmospheric chemistry of Delhi is much more complex to understand. This work put forward importance of measurements and modelling approaches to scientifically conclude that half of the water uptake and visibility reduction by aerosol particles around Delhi is caused by the hydrochloric acid (HCl) emissions, which is locally emitted in Delhi potentially due to plastic contained waste burning and other industrial processes, said Sachin S Gunthe, Associate Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, IIT Madras, who led the study.

The latest study greatly enhances our understanding about the precise role of PM2.5 in chemistry of fog formation, which will help policy makers to frame the better policies for improving the air quality and visibility over the national capital. The researchers noted that during winter season, most of the Indo Gangetic Plain invariably is engulfed in a dense fog and haze, particularly during the months of December and January.

Over the national capital, dense fog negatively impacts the air and surface transport resulting in huge financial losses and jeopardise human lives, they said. The study explained that complex chemical reactions involving HCl, which is directly emitted in the atmosphere from plastic contained waste burning and few industrial processes, is primarily responsible for high PM2.5 chloride and subsequent haze and fog formation over Delhi during chilly winter nights.

Also Read: Here Is How You Can Protect Your Health Against Air Pollution And COVID-19

The team, including researchers from the Harvard University, US, and Manchester University in the UK, deployed state-of-the-art instruments to measure the chemical composition and other important properties of PM2.5, and the relative humidity and temperature in Delhi.

Professor R Ravikrishna, from Department of Chemical Engineering, IIT Madras, noted that with the results from first couple of days, it was very clear to us that Delhi is different.

Generally for a polluted urban region like Delhi, one would expect sulfate to be highest inorganic fraction of particulate matter, however, we found chloride to be the highest inorganic fraction of particulate matter, Professor Ravikrishna, who was also part of the study, said.

The researchers explained that HCl from various sources combines with ammonia, which is emitted in great amounts over this region. The resulting ammonium chloride (NH4Cl) condenses to aerosol and exponentially increase the water uptake ability of aerosol particles resulting in the increase in size, eventually leading to dense fog formation, they said. In the absence of the excess chloride, the fog formation otherwise would be suppressed significantly, according to the researchers.

The study emphasised that plastic burning emits toxic substances in the atmosphere impacting human health, and these emissions are for the first time linked to visibility and climate. Plastic-contained waste burning can emit highly toxic chemicals called ‘dioxins’, which can accumulate in food chain causing severe problems with reproduction and immune system, the researchers said,

Given that we find plastic burning as a potential cause of the reduced visibility, we hope these findings will help policy makers to efficiently enforce and implement policies that are already in place towards regulating open burning of plastic contained-waste and other potential chlorine sources, Mr. Gunthe added.

Also Read: Air Pollution Linked To Increased Risk Of Pregnancy Loss In India: Lancet Study

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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World

15,52,00,384Cases
6,03,54,534Active
9,16,04,062Recovered
32,41,788Deaths
Coronavirus has spread to 192 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 15,52,00,384 and 32,41,788 have died; 6,03,54,534 are active cases and 9,16,04,062 have recovered as on May 6, 2021 at 3:48 am.

India

2,10,77,410 412262Cases
35,66,398 79169Active
1,72,80,844 329113Recovered
2,30,168 3980Deaths
In India, there are 2,10,77,410 confirmed cases including 2,30,168 deaths. The number of active cases is 35,66,398 and 1,72,80,844 have recovered as on May 6, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State & District Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
DistrictCases
Mumbai45,478
Thane13,660
Pune9,920
Mumbai Suburban5,363
Aurangabad1,974
Nashik1,575
Raigad1,462
Palghar1,421
Solapur1,291
Jalgaon1,039
Akola757
Nagpur692
Kolhapur646
Satara629
Ratnagiri350
Amravati291
Dhule228
Hingoli208
Jalna201
Ahmednagar190
Nanded176
Yavatmal150
Sangli145
Latur139
Osmanabad125
Sindhudurg114
Buldhana88
Parbhani78
gondia69
Beed54
Nandurbar42
Gadchiroli42
Bhandara41
Chandrapur32
Washim13
Wardha11

48,80,542 57,640

6,43,782 286

41,64,098 57,006

72,662 920

DistrictCases
Kannur357
Kasaragod333
Palakkad224
Malappuram119
Kollam118
Thrissur106
Thiruvananthapuram104
Pathanamthitta98
Kozhikode90
Alappuzha76
Kottayam73
Ernakulam60
Idukki40
Wayanad36

17,43,932 41,953

3,76,004 18,789

13,62,363 23,106

5,565 58

DistrictCases
Udupi1,176
Kalaburagi669
Yadgir538
Bengaluru Urban529
Raichur369
Mandya346
Belagavi337
Bidar219
Hassan205
Davangere204
Vijayapura201
Dakshina Kannada179
Chikkaballapura149
Mysuru107
Bagalkote103
Uttara Kannada95
Shivamogga67
Dharwad61
Ballari60
Gadag45
Bengaluru Rural40
Tumakuru36
Kolar29
Haveri24
Chikkamagaluru19
Chitradurga14
Koppal5
Kodagu4
Ramanagara3
Chamarajanagara0

17,41,046 50,112

4,87,308 22,925

12,36,854 26,841

16,884 346

DistrictCases
Gautam Buddha Nagar1,119
Agra933
Ghaziabad794
Meerut504
Lucknow386
Saharanpur298
Kanpur Nagar286
Moradabad252
Varanasi243
Hapur225
Aligarh215
Basti214
Amethi206
Rampur203
Jaunpur194
Firozabad190
Barabanki168
Gorakhpur166
Bulandshahr166
Siddharth Nagar159
Ghazipur159
Bijnor157
Deoria143
Azamgarh138
Sant Kabeer Nagar132
Mathura129
Ayodhya120
Muzaffarnagar117
Sambhal116
Sultanpur97
Ambedkar Nagar92
Maharajganj85
Amroha80
Rae Bareli78
Bahraich73
Kheri72
Kannauj69
Baghpat68
Kushi Nagar67
Bhadohi60
Ballia60
Gonda59
Etah52
Hardoi49
Balrampur49
Mau48
Mainpuri46
Etawah46
Hathras43
Unnao42
Jalaun41
Jhansi41
Shamli40
Chandauli38
Auraiya37
Farrukhabad36
Sitapur32
Prayagraj30
Banda27
Shahjahanpur25
Shravasti23
Budaun23
Mirzapur22
Bareilly17
Kasganj16
Pratapgarh15
Pilibhit15
Sonbhadra10
Kaushambi6
Kanpur Dehat4
Chitrakoot4
Lalitpur3
Hamirpur3
Mahoba3
Fatehpur3

13,99,294 31,111

2,62,474 10,094

11,22,669 40,852

14,151 353

DistrictCases
Chennai23,324
Chengalpattu1,314
Thiruvallur774
Villupuram509
Kanchipuram503
Tiruvannamalai496
Cuddalore477
Ariyalur444
Tirunelveli433
Tuticorin333
Kallakurichi324
Madurai322
Salem258
Coimbatore188
Virudhunagar185
Dindigul175
Perambalur133
Ranipet133
Thanjavur130
Theni129
Tiruchirappalli119
Ramanathapuram119
Tiruppur116
Kanniyakumari110
Tenkasi103
Nagapattinam99
Karur88
Namakkal83
Erode75
Vellore71
Thiruvarur67
Pudukkottai53
Sivaganga46
Tirupathur45
Krishnagiri43
The Nilgiris17
Dharmapuri15

12,72,602 23,310

1,28,311 3,081

11,29,512 20,062

14,779 167

DistrictCases
North West5,463
Central4,817
West4,768
New Delhi3,405
North3,059
East2,472
South East2,446
South West2,391
South2,329
North East1,914
Shahdara1,580

12,53,902 20,960

91,859 1,440

11,43,980 19,209

18,063 311

DistrictCases
Kurnool795
Krishna557
Guntur511
Anantapur428
East Godavari356
Chittoor319
Sri Potti Sriramulu Nell*296
Y.S.R.205
West Godavari199
Srikakulam183
Prakasam104
Visakhapatnam103
Vizianagaram23

12,06,232 22,204

1,70,588 10,991

10,27,270 11,128

8,374 85

DistrictCases
Kolkata2,777
Howrah1,435
24 Paraganas North1,031
Hooghly604
24 Paraganas South281
Maldah235
Dinajpur Uttar216
Coochbehar210
Birbhum206
Medinipur West159
Medinipur East153
Nadia139
Purba Bardhaman130
Murshidabad125
Bankura116
Darjeeling97
Jalpaiguri88
Paschim Bardhaman70
Purulia66
Dinajpur Dakshin50
Alipurduar39
Kalimpong18
Jhargram9

9,16,635 18,102

1,21,872 926

7,82,916 17,073

11,847 103

DistrictCases
Bilaspur100
Korba100
Mungeli87
Baloda Bazar85
Jashpur77
Janjgir-Champa56
Mahasamund54
Rajnandgaon52
Kabirdham52
Raigarh47
Raipur46
Balod41
Korea39
Durg31
Bemetara21
Kanker19
Balrampur17
Surguja14
Gariyaband10
Surajpur9
Dhamtari6
Bijapur2
Bastar2
Dantewada0
Kondagaon0
Narayanpur0
Sukma0

8,02,643 15,157

1,29,211 4,752

6,63,694 10,152

9,738 253

DistrictCases
Jaipur2,177
Jodhpur1,748
Udaipur724
Bharatpur563
Kota503
Nagaur500
Ajmer379
Dungarpur374
Pali352
Jhalawar329
Bhilwara250
Sikar231
Chittorgarh188
Tonk171
Jalore164
Rajsamand140
Sirohi130
Bikaner112
Banswara91
Alwar90
Churu81
Jhunjhunu64
Dausa61
Dholpur60
Baran59
Jaisalmer53
Barmer34
Hanumangarh31
SawaiMadhopur26
Karauli17
Pratapgarh14
Ganganagar8
Bundi5

6,85,036 16,815

1,96,683 362

4,83,332 17,022

5,021 155

DistrictCases
Ahmadabad17,125
Surat2,311
Vadodara1,555
Gandhinagar410
Mahesana159
Banas Kantha147
Bhavnagar146
Rajkot135
Arvalli134
Mahisagar125
Anand107
PanchMahals107
Patan105
SabarKantha101
Kachchh99
Kheda98
Jamnagar63
Bharuch56
Botad55
Surendranagar55
Valsad47
GirSomnath45
Dohad43
Chhotaudepur37
Naysari35
Junagadh31
Narmada25
DevbhumiDwarka22
Amreli16
Porbandar11
Tapi6
Dang5
Morbi4

6,33,427 12,955

1,48,124 173

4,77,391 12,995

7,912 133

DistrictCases
Indore3,839
Bhopal1,880
Ujjain799
Burhanpur351
Neemuch319
Jabalpur276
East Nimar266
Sagar228
Gwalior211
Khargone196
Dewas140
Dhar132
Mandsaur112
Morena109
Bhind87
Raisen71
Barwani60
Ratlam51
Rewa39
Shajapur39
Hoshangabad37
Vidisha37
Chhatarpur35
Betul35
Rajgarh31
Dindori29
Sheopur26
Damoh26
Satna24
Anuppur22
Panna20
Tikamgarh18
Sidhi17
Narsinghpur17
Chhindwara16
Agar Malwa15
Mandla15
Shivpuri15
Jhabua14
Shandol14
Singrauli13
Ashoknagar13
Datia12
Sehore12
Umaria10
Balaghat9
Guna8
Harda4
Alirajpur3
Katni3
Seoni2
Niwari0

6,24,985 12,319

89,244 2,605

5,29,667 9,643

6,074 71

DistrictCases
Gurugram2,950
Faridabad867
Sonipat404
Rohtak145
Palwal120
Jhajjar114
Karnal104
Hisar98
Ambala93
Panipat78
Nuh68
Bhiwani60
Rewari56
Kurukshetra55
Sirsa50
Kaithal48
Mahendragarh47
CharkiDadri43
Panchkula39
Fatehabad38
Jind38
Yamunanagar19

5,58,975 15,416

1,13,425 4,595

4,40,590 10,640

4,960 181

DistrictCases
Patna279
Bhagalpur266
Rohtas256
Khagaria253
Begusarai243
Madhubani199
Munger188
Jehanabad178
Katihar175
Darbhanga143
Samastipur139
Siwan139
PurbiChamparan138
Purnia135
Banka134
Buxar134
Nalanda123
Gopalganj123
Nawada122
Sheikhpura118
Gaya115
Kaimur (bhabua)105
Bhojpur103
Saran101
Muzaffarpur96
Saharsa88
Supaul87
Vaishali87
Madhepura82
Kishanganj75
Aurangabad75
Sitamarhi73
Lakhisarai72
Araria68
Pashchim Champaran57
Arwal52
Jamui47
Sheohar20

5,38,677 14,836

1,13,480 3,049

4,22,210 11,726

2,987 61

DistrictCases
Ganjam581
Jajapur322
Khordha238
Baleshwar190
Kendrapara164
Cuttack155
Bhadrak137
Balangir129
Puri103
Sundargarh102
Jagatsinghapur91
Nayagarh86
Mayurbhanj73
Nuapada69
Gajapati61
Dhenkanal36
Boudh34
Kendujhar34
Deogarh33
Kalahandi33
Sonepur29
Kandhamal28
Anugul26
Malkangiri20
Bargarh16
Koraput16
Sambalpur16
Jharsuguda8
Nabarangpur2
Rayagada2

4,89,641 9,889

71,134 3,697

4,16,403 6,176

2,104 16

DistrictCases
Hyderabad2,475
Ranga Reddy183
Suryapet87
Jagitial77
Nizamabad76
MedchalMalkajgiri75
Mancherial43
YadadriBhuvanagiri40
Jogulamba Gadwal40
Vikarabad40
Nalgonda33
Warangal Urban32
Mahabubnagar30
Sangareddy26
Khammam26
Adilabad22
Nirmal21
Karimnagar17
RajannaSircilla16
Medak11
Kamareddy11
Mahabubabad10
Jayashankar Bhupalapally9
Nagarkurnool8
Kumuram Bheem Asifabad8
Jangoan8
Siddipet7
Peddapalli5
Bhadradri Kothagudem5
Warangal Rural4
Mulugu3
Narayanpet3
Wanaparthy1

4,75,748 6,026

77,127 577

3,96,042 6,551

2,579 52

DistrictCases
Amritsar485
Jalandhar297
Ludhiana293
Tarn Taran163
Gurdaspur154
Hoshiarpur140
S.A.S Nagar137
Patiala132
Sangrur107
Shahid Bhagat Singh Nagar (Nawanshahr)99
Pathankot86
Rupnagar (Ropar)74
Faridkot74
Sri Muktsar Sahib71
Moga65
Bathinda60
Fatehgarh Sahib57
Fazilka53
Firozepur50
Kapurthala44
Mansa31
Barnala25

4,07,509 7,953

63,007 1,072

3,34,677 6,701

9,825 180

DistrictCases
Kamrup Metro276
Golaghat203
Nagaon143
Hojai89
Dima Hasao86
Karimganj85
Tinsukia84
Cachar80
Dibrugarh61
Hailakandi57
Lakhimpur57
Marigaon50
Dhemaji47
Kamrup42
Kokrajhar37
Dhubri30
Charaideo29
Barpeta28
Udalguri28
Sonitpur27
Jorhat24
Nalbari23
Darrang20
Sivasagar20
Goalpara19
Biswanath16
Baksa14
KarbiAnglong13
Bongaigaon12
Chirang6
West KarbiAnglong5
South SalmaraMancachar4
Majuli2

2,72,751 4,826

31,262 1,855

2,40,004 2,916

1,485 55

DistrictCases
East Singhbum170
Ranchi148
Hazaribagh110
Garhwa80
Ramgarh75
Koderma58
Simdega48
Dhanbad32
Gumla28
Palamu27
West Singhbhum21
SaraikelaKharsawan20
Giridih19
Bokaro16
Latehar14
Khunti10
Lohardaga8
Deoghar5
Dumka5
Pakur4
Jamtara2
Godda2
Chatra1
Sahebganj0

2,63,115 5,770

59,532 175

2,00,237 5,804

3,346 141

DistrictCases
Dehradun370
Nainital323
Tehri Garhwal110
Haridwar94
Udam Singh Nagar83
Almora71
Champawat45
Pithoragarh43
Chamoli36
PauriGarhwal36
Bageshwar31
Rudraprayag30
Uttar Kashi24

2,11,834 7,783

59,526 2,899

1,49,166 4,757

3,142 127

DistrictCases
Anantnag395
Srinagar300
Kulgam295
Baramulla271
Shopian255
Kupwara231
Bandipora175
Udhampur155
Ramban151
Jammu138
Budgam110
Pulwama108
Kathua53
Rajouri39
Ganderbal37
Poonch35
Doda27
Reasi26
Samba25
Kishtwar10
Mirpur0
Muzaffarabad0

1,96,585 4,716

39,628 2,326

1,54,447 2,338

2,510 52

DistrictCases
Hamirpur117
Kangra105
Una41
Solan32
Chamba29
Bilaspur21
Mandi21
Sirmaur11
Shimla10
Kullu4
Kinnaur2
Lahaul And Spiti0

1,14,787 3,842

25,902 2,330

87,193 1,480

1,692 32

DistrictCases
South Goa69
North Goa57

1,04,398 3,496

27,964 1,233

74,991 2,192

1,443 71

DistrictCases
Pondicherry111
Mahe4
Karaikal2
Yanam0

65,117 1,819

11,717 868

52,517 933

883 18

DistrictCases
Chandigarh313

46,793 817

8,363 193

37,898 610

532 14

DistrictCases
Dhalai196
Sepahijala174
Gomati74
South Tripura53
Unakoti49
West Tripura45
Khowai24
North Tripura14

36,534 300

2,127 222

34,004 75

403 3

DistrictCases
Churachandpur32
Kangpokpi26
Imphal West21
Thoubal18
Imphal East10
Tengnoupal9
Bishnupur7
Senapati6
Chandel5
Kamjong5
Ukhrul4
Jiribam3
Pherzawl3
Kakching2
Tamenglong2
Noney1

33,353 397

2,657 266

30,262 121

434 10

DistrictCases
Changlang31
Papum Pare8
Lohit3
Namsai2
West Siang1
East Siang1
Upper Siang1
Tawang1
PakkeKessang1
West Kameng0
Upper Subansiri0
Tirap0
Siang0
Shi Yomi0
Anjaw0
Lower Subansiri0
Lower Dibang Valley0
Longding0
Leparada0
KurungKumey0
KraDaadi0
Kamle0
East Kameng0
Dibang Valley0
Lower Siang0

19,412 220

1,776 144

17,577 76

59

DistrictCases
East Khasi Hills22
West Garo Hills5
South West Garo Hills4
North Garo Hills1
West Jaintia Hills1
West Khasi Hills1
East Garo Hills0
East Jaintia Hills0
Ribhoi0
South Garo Hills0
South West Khasi Hills0

18,283 269

2,135 116

15,957 147

191 6

DistrictCases
Dimapur20
Mon8
Kohima7
Kiphire3
Tuensang3
Peren2
Phek1
Longleng0
Mokokchung0
Wokha0
Zunheboto0

15,004 287

2,038 240

12,848 47

118

DistrictCases
Kargil77
LehLadakh43

14,811 251

1,494 120

13,166 131

151

DistrictCases
East District3
South District3
North District0
West District0

8,919 221

2,050 120

6,714 97

155 4

DistrictCases
Dadra And Nagar Haveli20

8,325 151

1,599 7

6,722 158

4

DistrictCases
Kolasib11
Aizawl10
Mamit8
Lawngtlai2
Lunglei2
Saitual1
Champhai0
Hnahthial0
Khawzawl0
Saiha0
Serchhip0

6,964 170

1,642 33

5,305 137

17

DistrictCases
South Andamans33
Nicobars1
North And Middle Andaman1

6,223 42

224 8

5,928 49

71 1

DistrictCases
Lakshadweep District0

3,376 127

1,129 36

2,240 162

7 1

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