Air quality worsening in India’s major cities, finds TERI survey

04 Jun 2014


Air quality has deteriorated in eight major Indian cities including Delhi and Mumbai, a survey of locals' perception of the environment by well-known research institute TERI has said.

A majority of the people who participated in the survey conducted by The Energy and Resources Institute also agreed that climate change was a reality and over 80 per cent of them felt that average temperatures had risen while 63 per cent said rainfall levels had gone down over time.

The TERI Environmental Survey 2014 was conducted in Delhi, Mumbai, Coimbatore, Guwahati, Indore, Jamshedpur, Kanpur and Pune to gauge the perception, awareness, opinion and behaviour of people towards environment in India.

The focus of the survey was on the general environment, and in particular, water and waste-related issues.

"Overall, a large majority felt that air quality had worsened and the number of bird species in their cities had declined. However, a majority of people felt that drinking water availability and quality as well as waste management in their cities had improved," the survey said.

"A vast majority of respondents (90 per cent) felt that climate change was a reality," it said.

In Delhi, over 90 per cent of the respondents agreed that climatic changes were occurring; 95 per cent felt that temperature was increasing and 64 per cent stated that rainfall was declining.

The response on wind patterns was mixed, with 39 per cent seeing a decline and 36 per cent seeing extreme patterns.

A large percentage of respondents in Delhi stated that they did not see any change or expressed their ignorance on the intensity and frequency of extreme weather events in the city.

Only 15 per cent citizens viewed that there was no conflict between the objectives of environmental protections and development.

Over 50 per cent favoured prioritising environment over development. Air quality, however, was stated to have worsened by over 50 per cent of the respondents in the city.

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