A decision to continue the project for real-time assessment of air pollution sources in Delhi, being done in collaboration with Washington University in St. Louis, will be taken this week by the Delhi government, officials said.
After a year-long study of pollution sources in the capital, the University had submitted their findings in a report to a three-member expert committee, comprising representatives of IIT-Kanpur, among others, around April this year.
The panel found shortcomings in the study which were communicated to the University.
A Delhi government official said, “These shortcomings were technical in nature, about the methodology used, the concentration of pollutants and other limitations that the panel found. The University accepted these shortcomings and left them open ended.”
Sources of pollution in the capital have been identified in previous studies by institutions including IIT-Kanpur, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and the Central Pollution Control Board.
However, the Delhi government had sought an assessment of the pollution sources in real time to plan its actions and the proposal to conduct a pilot project with the Washington University was approved in 2018, with a budget of Rs 1.2 crore.
Another Delhi government official said, “A final report from the expert committee is expected next week. The University had sent a report to the expert committee, which was reviewed and comments were sent back. The University had responded to these comments.”
Officials also did not specify if the shortcomings were major, but stated that a review process involves checking all aspects of the study: “The project is not cancelled. Since it was initiated by the Chief Minister’s office, the final decision on it would be taken by the CMO or the Delhi government.”
The Indian Express contacted a Washington University representative for a comment but did not receive a response.
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