Report by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) regarding the performance of smog towers to combat air pollution in Delhi, 08/11/2023
Report by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) in Original Application No 663 of 2023 In re News item published in Indian Express dated 07.10.2023 titled GRAP Stage 1 kicks in as air quality dips to poor, condition likely to prevail till Sunday. The DPCC report was on the smog towers installed in Delhi to fight air pollution.
The desired objective to provide clean air in one kilometre radius could not be met as impact evaluated by IIT, Bombay is very limited upto 200 meters. Further, the low efficiency of smog tower was also assessed with respect to economy and it was found that annual operation and maintenance charge was approximately Rs 1.5 crore per annum and approximately 90 lakhs per annum for electricity bill payable to NDMC. Around Rs 20 lakhs per month was being incurred for the operation and maintenance of the smog tower for just limited PM reduction impact (10-12 per cent for just 200 meters).
The performance of Connaught Place smog tower is not satisfactory. Delhi's air quality is also dependent on meteorological factors which also highly contributes to the air quality of Delhi. Even slight wind speed and turbulence in weather sweeps off the pollutants and air quality index improves.
The other smog tower at Anand Vihar did not have a positive impact as revealed from AQI levels during winter period especially in the CAAQMS at Anand Vihar which still remains an air pollution hotspot. The CAAQMS stations situated just 30 meter from the smog tower witnessed the AQI in severe category during peak months (October 2022 - January 2023) and there is hardly any improvement shown/recorded in air quality.