Air quality panel ropes in top institutions; to use AI to improve air quality in Delhi-NCR

The Commission has entrusted the task to expert groups from institutions and think tanks like Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), IITM-Pune, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), IIT Delhi, NEERI and C-DAC Pune for framework development of air quality management DSS for Delhi. The Air Quality Management Decision Support Tool (DST) integrates an emissions inventory development application and database; regional, local and source–receptor modelling; and Geographical Information System (GIS) based visualization tools in a software framework so as to build a robust system to formulate and implement source specific interventions to improve the air quality over targeted sectors of Delhi / NCR, the ministry said.


The Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) has roped in top technical institutions to set up a decision support system (DSS) which will use artificial intelligence to help improve the air quality in Delhi and NCR. Sources from the Union Environment Ministry said the Commission has begun the process of setting up a DSS having a web and multi-model based operational and planning decision support tool.

The Commission has entrusted the task to expert groups from institutions and think tanks like Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), IITM-Pune, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), IIT Delhi, NEERI and C-DAC Pune for framework development of air quality management DSS for Delhi.

''This tool will help immensely in capturing the static and dynamic features of the emissions from various sources. It will have an integrated framework to handle both primary and secondary pollutants using chemical transport model. ''The system will also be able to handle the source specific interventions with the framework to estimate benefits of interventions and will focus on presenting the best results in a comprehensive, user-friendly and simple format for different users,'' the ministry sources said.

Elaborating on the role of various organisations in the DSS, the ministry said while IMD, Delhi and IITM Pune will provide forecast in Delhi-NCR using regional scales, TERI will help in development and upgradation of fine resolution emission inventory.

The Air Quality Management Decision Support Tool (DST) integrates an emissions inventory development application and database; regional, local and source–receptor modelling; and Geographical Information System (GIS) based visualization tools in a software framework so as to build a robust system to formulate and implement source specific interventions to improve the air quality over targeted sectors of Delhi / NCR, the ministry said.

''IIT Delhi and NEERI will forecast using urban air quality and formulate control actions at short-term and long-term basis and identify pollution hotspots in the city. C-DAC, Pune will help in integration of physical, chemistry and engineering components at a common platform and dissemination of group output in simple form,'' the ministry sources said.

The sources covered will include industries, transport, power plants, residential, DG sets, road dust, agricultural burning, refuse burning, construction dust, ammonia, volatile organic compounds, landfill etc. ''For instance, municipalities, industrial associations, industrial development authorities etc. would be the stake holders for identifying interventions related to waste burning, industrial source pollution, respectively,'' it said.

Explaining the process further, sources said upon identification of feasible interventions, ''the artificial intelligence-based expert system, which has a hierarchical data base of simulated scenarios, will potentially assess the impact of the identified feasible intervention which would be implemented by the regulatory organization such as Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and state PCBs.'' 


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