Citizen reporting, survey-based reporting of issues and improved inter-agency coordination major aspects of the Project.
Delhi, Oct 27
Considering the large number of non-point dispersed sources contributing to air pollution in Delhi, a Project to control air pollution from dispersed sources will be implemented in Delhi with special focus during the coming winter season.
The Commission for Air Quality Management in NCR and Adjoining Areas (CAQM) with the support of an NGO, Air Pollution Action Group (A-PAG), had initiated a Pilot Project with the active help of South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) in its jurisdiction in the month of December, 2020 to abate air pollution from large number of non-point dispersed sources.
The progress of the Pilot Project by SDMC was reviewed by CAQM on 22nd September, 2021 and based on the learning and outcome of the project, NDMC, North DMC and East DMC have expressed their interest in replicating the project in their respective jurisdictions.
Based on the learning from the Pilot, the Project is now being upscaled and replicated in North DMC, East DMC and New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) areas to control dispersed sources air pollution in the coming winter season. The Project envisages easy identification, allocation and resolution of air pollution-related issues arising out of large number of non-point dispersed sources.
At the Review Meeting held by the Commission on 21st October, 2021 with Delhi Government Officials and Commissioners / Chairpersons of Municipal Corporations /New Delhi Municipal Council, it has been decided that the project will go live in North DMC, East DMC and NDMC w.e.f. 27th October, 2021 with improved inter-agency coordination among Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC), Nodal Officers and support from other agencies concerned. Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) has also been formulated for this purpose.
SUCCESS OF PILOT
Supported by a robust review & monitoring program, the Pilot Project was successful in identifying about 17,290 issues in 104 wards of South DMC, out of which 10,900 (63%) of the issues pertain to the SDMC and the rest 6,400 (37%) issues have been assigned to other agencies. Under this pilot project, SDMC has successfully resolved 95% of the issues pertaining to its own jurisdiction. The project inter-alia focused mainly on the following steps:
Sensitization Exercise to help ground-level officials understand the linkages between their daily tasks and the quality of air
3rdParty Survey to identify issues that contribute to spike in air pollution levels
Allocation of issues identified and further tag them to the agencies concerned
Ground-level reporting of resolution of the issues by the authorities concerned
Enhancement of SmartCity 311 App to improve efficiency and effectiveness of the complaint redressal processand
Review Process to follow through on-ground survey procedure and ensure high standards while resolving the issues.
The major pollution sources addressed under this pilot project are: garbage dump sites, overflowing dhalaos, burning of garbage, construction & demolition sites, debris dumped on public land, road dust from unpaved roads, barren lands, industrial emissions, vehicular pollution etc.
Viewing the need for technological advancement as the most crucial step towards transforming the whole complaint redressal process, SDMC with technological support of A-PAG brought enhancements to the SDMC’s 311 Live Dashboard and upgraded it into an advanced ‘SmartCity 311 App’ for efficient and effective monitoring of dispersed sources of air pollution.
With the introduction of this advanced App, issues can be conveniently raised with a single tap. The ‘SmartCity 311 App’ carry a number of enhanced features like a simplified transfer protocol to reassign issues to other agencies, validation check to mark resolution has been introduced, updated reporting formats for easier monitoring, feature to track progress on long term issues and features to ensure officials are present at the issue site while uploading the resolution proof.
Citizen participation is an important aspect of collection of information from different sources in real-time. This not only strengthens the process of citizen-led issue identification but also expands the reachability of the system. Apart from on-ground 3rd party surveys, the SmartCity 311 App will also allow and encourage the citizens to raise complaints and help the municipal bodies in taking necessary steps to redress the issues concerned.
Besides sensitization workshops for increased understanding of air pollution issues arising out of dispersed sources, special focus has been laid by the SDMC on long term issues affecting the air quality during the Pilot Project. The progress of the Pilot Project by SDMC was reviewed by CAQM on 22nd September, 2021 and based on the learning and outcome of the project, NDMC, North DMC and East DMC have expressed their interest in replicating the project in their respective jurisdictions.
As per reports received by the Commission, the Air Pollution module is now live on the citizen app in SDMC & EDMC.