Mission Goal

 

Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), Pune, a constituent under the Ministry of Earth Sciences, Government of India, is spearheading country's first major initiative named as "System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research (SAFAR)". It has been successfully tested during the Commonwealth Games 2010 for National Capital Region Delhi. Our vision is to spread SAFAR to other major cities in India and to put our country in frontiers of Air Quality Forecasting Research.

The SAFAR provides location specific information on Air Quality in near real time and its forecast 24 hours in advance. It has capability to forecast 3 days (72hrs) in advance but 3 day’s advance forecast will be issued only when there is some specific extreme event. It is complemented by the weather forecasting system designed by IMD, Pune. The ultimate objective is to increase the awareness among general public regarding the air quality in their city well in advance so that appropriate mitigation measures and systematic action can be taken up for the betterment of air quality and related health issues.

SAFAR- MOTIVATION

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), metropolitan cities are the most critically affected by atmospheric pollution. India is one of the fastest economies of the world and rapidly developing. Metropolitan cities of India are expanding with rapid growth in all sectors of life. Due to the rapid development, migration of rural population towards urban metropolitan cities and industrialization, cities like Delhi, Pune, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, and Ahmedabad are on top of the Indian map in terms of pollution. The air pollution problem is directly related to the human health and agriculture. The topography of stated Indian metropolitan cities are unique which has combination of both land and oceanic environment and likely to play an important role in the distribution of atmospheric chemical constituents. The local emissions in the metropolitan cities also affect the ambient level of pollution in the neighbouring rural regions due to short range transport of pollution.

One of the most advanced, rapidly expanding city of India is Pune. Pune, the cultural capital of Maharashtra, in the western part of India has experienced rapid urbanization, during the recent years. Also, the process of urbanization is faster in the Pimpri-Chinchwad region which is an adjoining twin city. There are around 12 industrial estates and Information Technology Hubs in both Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad region (hereafter called as Pune Metropolitan Region (PMR)). As centers of multinational trade, commerce and industries, the growth in vehicular traffic is a serious concern. The infrastructural developments, consequent population growth and migration drive the growth of villages into towns, towns into cities and cities into major cities. Consequently, PMR air we breathe contains variety of hazardous emissions which are of great concern for the health of PMR citizens as well as agricultural yield in the region and therefore, a need is felt to address this issue.