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Current Affairs

Smog towers

Date: 01 August 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous

Issue

IIT Bombay has backed out from the project to install Smog towers in Delhi on a pilot basis as mandated by the Supreme Court.

 

Background

Last November, a Supreme Court Bench of had sharp words for authorities in Haryana, Punjab, and Uttar Pradesh for failing to control the practice of stubble-burning on farms, which contributes to air pollution in Delhi.

 

Details

  • A proposal on the towers was submitted by the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay (IIT-B) to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

  • In January, the Supreme Court directed that two towers should be installed in the capital by April on a pilot project basis — one at East Delhi’s Anand Vihar, and another at Central Delhi’s Connaught Place.

  • Smog towers have been experimented with in recent years in cities in the Netherlands, China, South Korea and Poland. 

  • The towers to be installed in Delhi were to be the result of a collaboration between the IITs at Mumbai and Delhi, and the University of Minnesota. 

  • Pollution levels in Delhi increase dramatically during winter — on some days to nearly 10 times above the limits prescribed by WHO, posing a serious risk to vulnerable and also healthy populations.

 

Smog tower

  • A smog tower is a structure designed to work as a large-scale air purifier, fitted with multiple layers of filters which trap fine dust particles suspended in the air as it passes through them.

  • Air is drawn through fans installed at the top of the tower, passed through filters, and then released near the ground.

  • The large-scale filters expected to be installed in the towers in Delhi would use carbon nano-fibers as a major component, and would be fitted along the peripheries of the towers, project experts had said, adding that the height of the towers would be 20 metres.