Year in review: 2018

Part III

2018 is almost over, so we got in touch with a few people in the field and asked three questions. This three-part series presents the views of stakeholders in the air pollution field in India, including scientists, community groups, media and others. Read their comments below (and on @airqualityindia) and join the conversation.

“One, I hope containing air pollution finds a bigger place in election manifestos. Two, officialdom’s move against diesel vehicles, at least private ones, could become bigger – we’ve already seen this in EPCA and Delhi’s draft EV policy. Three, from a people’s point of view this crisis will be seen as beyond Delhi, #NotJustDelhi for these hashtagged times; awareness is spreading rapidly. But of course one needs to temper one’s optimism – the reality is that pollution levels remain the worst in the world, and crop burning and fireworks worsened this year rather than improve.”

Chetan Bhattacharji, NDTV (@CBhattacharji)

“That the voice of the most underserved will be heard and those most at risk will get attention.”

Ravina Raj Kohli, #MyRightToBreathe (@ravinarajkohli)

“The biggest learning has been that improving air quality in India is going to require a dedicated focus in controlling emissions at source. There are no easy solutions to this problem & will require people who are willing to do a lot of ground-level grunt work in tracking individual point sources of emissions and controlling them. A top-down approach is necessary but not sufficient & this needs people willing to travel city to city and implement systems and methodologies.”

Ronak Sutaria, UrbanSciences (@rsutaria)

“I am optimistic that the Governments would recognise the urgency to act on tackling the health emergency we face due to air pollution and will notify the NCAP (National Clean Air Programme) with ambitious time bound sectoral pollution reduction targets across sectors and strong legal binding/accountability as soon as possible and at-least by January 2019. This would prove to be a critical step forward in moving towards a Clean Air Nation and Breathable India.”

Sunil Dahiya, Greenpeace (@Sunil_S_Dahiya)

“The shift in narrative from Delhi to rest of India.”

Yogesh Ranganathan, CAP-B

“Not sure what I should be optimistic about.”

Ankit Bhargava, Sensing Local (@sensinglocal)

“More action at the sources. More information to better understand evolution of pollution.”

Dr. Sarath Guttikunda, UrbanEmissions (@UrbanEmissions)

“That we get to see air pollution enter the mainstream discourse, and into the manifestos of political parties.”

Dr. Santosh Harish, CPR (@santoshharish1)

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