The Union Environment Ministry has tasked the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR)-National Physical Laboratory (NPL) with certifying air quality monitoring instruments.
This is in anticipation of rising demand by States — against the backdrop of the National Clean Air Campaign — for low-cost air quality monitoring instruments that can monitor levels of nitrous oxides, ozone, and the particulate matter.
According to a notification dated August 22, “ The Central Government hereby designates the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-National Physical Laboratory (CSIR-NPL) as national verification agency for certifying instruments and equipments for monitoring emissions and ambient air. CSIR-NPL shall develop necessary infrastructure, management system, testing and certification facilities conforming to international standards,”
“Currently, the machines employed by State and Central Pollution Control Boards (SPCB and CPCB) are imported and can cost up to 1 crore to install and about 50 lakh to maintain over five years,” Satchidananda Tripathi, Professor, Indian Institute of Technology-Kanpur, who works on air quality-related research, told The Hindu.
“Several new sensors, which are far cheaper, are likely in the future, and it would be useful to have a creditable agency that can rate the quality of these devices,” he added.