Kolkata Clean Air

Air Pollution levels across cities in India have been at alarming levels raising huge concern for public health and environment. In the city of Kolkata Air Pollution levels are so alarming that :

70% Of citizen suffer from some form for Respiratory Disorder
47% citizens suffer from LRTI
Average Life Expectancy due to Air Pollution has decreased by a span of 6.1 years.

Our Approach:
Build a citizen and community driven campaign to counter Air Pollution Sources through citizen engagements and Policy Change.
1) Democratise Data For Air Quality: When we started there were no institutional continuous Air Quality Monitoring systems that could make citizen know what they breathe. We installed low cost sensor based air quality monitors and raised the issue through media campaigns and citizen mobilisation to influence policy action and installation of Air Quality Monitors. So far Government has installed 5 Real Time Monitors in the city.
2) Mobilise People and Link Air Pollution to Public Health Crisis: We organised a group of Doctors as "Doctors for Kolkata Clean Air" and Published reports on How Air Pollution is causing a public Health Crisis in the City. This helped us connect with masses better and build more pressure on government to take actions. We also did health study of traffic constables, public transport drivers to assess the impact of air pollution on people who are more exposed to pollution due to their profession.
3) Source Identification: We did small studies to link the trend of air quality to air pollution and requested the government to conduct an Source Apportionment Study to identify the main sources of pollution (The Final Report of which is still pending an interim report was released by the research body)
4) Based on identified sources we have formed specific sectors to target:
1) Vehicular pollution: Government has implemented ban on 15 year old diesel vehicles and introduced electric vehicles. We are pushing for zero emission mobility for public transport. As reports show Kolkata has a huge opportunity to be a leader in public transport infrastructure based on mobility patterns.

b) Solid Waste: As open waste burning and landfill emissions are significant Contributor to Air Pollution

c) Cooking Coal: Switching from coal as cooking fuel to cleaner fuel specially for 1000s of Road side vendors. Pilots for Induction stoves are in process by the government

d) Solid Waste along with more significant is Construction and Demolition waste: The government has issued a notification to builder with a set guidelines to control pollution at construction sites and movement of construction materials or debris. We are soon hosting a few stake holder workshops involving builders and municipal authorities to setup process for safe processing and disposal of construction waste.

Apart from tacking the sources above we also work on area of citizen engagement through the following:
1) Increase Green Govern:
Plantation Drives, Vertical Gardening, Indoor Plants , Urban Gardens
2) Composting and Zero Waste Lifestyle workshops:
We are doing workshops with community.
3) Healthy Lungs:
Promote messages to reduce exposure to air pollution, use masks, Free PFT tests etc.