Dhruv Bhatnagar, Founder, Curol+

Dhruv Bhatnagar is a visionary who wished to do something different with his life, always. He wanted to work on out-of-the-box concepts and walk an extra mileon the road less traveled. Curol+ is a Gurugram-based company that focuses on making highly reliable patented products that can never fail. It produces anti- pollutant products that are flawless when it comes to reducing a minimum of 65% of PM 2.5 and PM 10 in the air and make human lives last longer by making the air breathable.

 

In current times, India’s prospective developmental goals face grave and multi-faceted risks from the ambient air pollution. It is causing an alarming rise in public health expenditure, reduced labour productivity, and diminished agricultural yields. Reports peg the total economic cost of air pollution for the Indian economy at INR 150 crores annually. 

Air quality in India has rapidly deteriorated over the last two decades making it the second largest risk factor today which is increasing the country’s disease burden. Around 97 percent of the country’s population was exposed to particulate matter (PM 2.5 & PM 10). 

Air pollution, all in all, adversely affects individual health of all citizens, raises mortality and morbidity rates, and leads to climate change. The mortality and morbidity levels have caused serious welfare losses to Indian economy coming out to approximate 5.9% of the GDP. 

Current Challenges

The Covid-19 pandemic has again highlighted the need to urgently address India’s chronic issue of air pollution. Report by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in April 2020 clearly showed how long-term exposure to air pollution can lead to higher mortality rates in people. Those who reside in high-pollution cities are more at risk of compromised respiratory and cardiac systems, making them even more vulnerable to Covid-19’s effects. 

As per 2019 the report by World Air Quality, India has 21 out of the 30 most polluted cities globally, where air quality is 10 times over the safe limits of air pollution laid down by WHO. 

In the current Indian scenario, there are multiple sources causing severe levels of air pollution. The major sources are vehicular emissions and smoke emissions from thermal power plants & industrial plants. Other conventional sources include coal-based power plants, burning of fossil fuels and some agricultural operations like farm fires and fertilizer application. 

Possible Solutions 

To combat the rising air pollution levels, a holistic emission control strategy is direly needed. It needs to be an amalgamation of successfully tested scientific ideas and technological developments, must support the economy and earn the support of the general public. The scale, urgency and complexity of air pollution demands that the government adopts a strong, well-coordinated and coherent fiscal response to it. 

It’s imperative that a financial architecture is created that can reconcile and mobilise public and private finance for clean-air solutions. Green sectors like e-mobility and clean energy are touted to be the driving force for devising and executing tangible solutions targeted at improving the air quality. In this regard, an investment fund dedicated to the green sectors can be instrumental in the growth of these industries and addressing the issues of air pollution and adverse climate change. 

Also, liquid-based anti-pollution products have risen as the go-to remedy for mitigating the effects of air pollutants. As these products can bind dust, they help curtail the sand and dust from floating in the external environment. These products help reduce the PM levels from the air and provide us cleaner and purer air to breathe by trapping all suspended particulate matters in the treated surface and not allowing them to rise back up. When used on roads and landfills of highly polluted cities by the government, these products can be very effective in reducing the harmful effects of pollution. Within homes, these liquid-based anti-pollution products remove the airborne particles present in the air inside and which carry infection along with dust mites. 

Summing Up 

Overall, policymakers and stakeholders need to adopt a robust commitment towards addressing the existing multi-dimensional problem of air pollution. The crisis requires innovative and collaborative solutions from public and private bodies. Institutions, philanthropies, governments and members of academe have been fighting the battle to achieve clean air for decades. Now, it’s time to tap into the power of a multi-stakeholder framework to overcome this challenge. 

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