For a Breath of Fresh Air: Ten years of progress and challenges in urban air quality management in India 1993-2002
Author: Tapan K Ghosh, Editorial and Production Consultant
Publisher: Environment and Social Development Unit, South Asia Region, The World Bank (India Country Office)
The economic boom that India went through during the 1990s gave rise to robust urban growth which caused a spurt in air pollution in major Indian cities. The magnitude of this spike was such that it became a cause of national concern and elicited global attention.
The level of suspended particulate matter (SPM) recorded in the large metropolitan cities of India, especially Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai, far exceeded the ambient air quality standards adopted by India and many other countries. Alarmed by the sudden spike in pollutants in the atmosphere, the Government implemented a slew of policy interventions the most publicised of which was the conversion of Delhi's public transport system to run on Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) in 2000