Bhubaneswar: Air pollution in Rourkela has become a cause for concern for the Odisha government ahead of the 2023 Men’s Hockey World Cup. Along with the Kalinga Stadium here, the Birsa Munda Stadium in Rourkela will be a venue for the tournament.
Rourkela is counted among the seven most polluted cities in Odisha, over which the National Green Tribunal has expressed its concern.
As per national ambient air quality standards, air quality index remaining within 0 to 50 is good for health. However, the air quality index in Rourkela is varies from 130 to 150 and sometimes breaches the 200-mark. This is a matter of concern for the Odisha government as the FIH may object to hosting matches at a venue which has such a poor air quality.
At a high level meeting chaired by Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mahapatra here recently, an action plan was devised to combat the pollution in the Steel City.
A decision was taken to monitor the discharge of pollutants from industrial units at Kalunga and Kunarmunda. The plants will be shut down if they do not take necessary steps to check the air pollution. Also, teams from SPCB, the district administration and experts will verify the air quality at regular intervals. The roads will be sprinkled with water and cleaned on regular basis to prevent pollution, sources informed.
Electronic display boards in every highly polluted place will be set up to check the air quality in those areas. The district collectors of Angul, Dhenkanal, Sundargarh, Sambalpur and Jharsuguda have been asked to restrict the use of sub-standard coal in roadside dhabas which also cause pollution.