Status of Industrial pollution by Pharma companies: CPCB

The BDMA executive director observed that though mostly the air pollution is due to emissions from automobile

Pharma Factory
Picture: Pixabay

The Bulk Drug Manufacturers Association (BDMA) has claimed that the industrial pollution caused by the pharma industries in and around Hyderabad is negligible as it is evidently proven by the statistics released by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

According to the CPCB statistics, there was drastic reduction in air pollution along industrial corridors in Hyderabad, during the recent lockdowns imposed by the state government in the state.

According to P Eshwar Reddy, executive director of BDMA, it is understood that industrial areas including Bolaram industrial development area (IDA), University of Hyderabad, ICRISAT at Patancheru, IDA Pashamylaram and Sanathnagar, were all breathing easy since the lockdown was imposed.

Documents of medical store
Picture: Pixabay

“Earlier, the state pollution control board and the central pollution control board were levelling allegations against the bulk drug pharma industries of causing large scale air pollution. However, after the state government has imposed lockdown, in just a span of 6 days there has been a drastic reduction in the air quality in and around the industrial areas where the bulk drug pharma companies are located.

While at the same time, the pharma companies are functioning full time and still the Air Quality Index (AQI) has improved drastically, as per the recent indices released by the central pollution control board,” said the executive director, while refuting the earlier allegations by the state pollution control board and other NGOs of pollution caused by the pharma industries.

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As per the statistics released by the CPCB, ever since the lockdown has been imposed in Telangana since May 11, 2021, there was drastic fall in the artificial introduction of organic compounds into the air like carbon dioxide (CO2), sulphur or its oxides, and nitrogen and its oxides.  

The BDMA executive director observed that though mostly the air pollution is due to emissions from automobiles, the PCB officials and environmental authorities and NGOs blame it on the industrial emissions.

“As per the CPCB’s statistics, during the lockdown period, vehicular PM2.5 emission in Hyderabad reduced by 54 per cent compared to usual traffic emissions due to drastic reduction in vehicular traffic.  For years, everyone is under the impression that the air pollution in and around Hyderabad is caused by the emissions from bulk drug and other pharmaceutical industries.

Obviously, this is the opinion of many of the environmentalists. We would only like to highlight here that today the pharma industries have installed highly advanced equipment and there is almost negligible industrial pollution from the bulk drug firms,” felt Eshwar Reddy.

Adding further Eshwar Reddy noted that most all the bulk drug units were operating at full capacity as they were mandated to see that there is no shortage of essential medicines due to Covid-19 pandemic in the country and also meet the export commitments. “As it is aware that pharma industry is exempted from the lockdown and there is full flow of bulk drug industrial activity going on in Hyderabad, in spite of this, air quality in Hyderabad improved dramatically.

This indicates that adequate control and treatment systems are provided and no pollution is caused by drug and pharma industry. The bad environment quality during normal times could be due to vehicular pollution, discharge of untreated sewage into water bodies and unscientific collection and handling of solid wastes,” observed Reddy.

He suggested the environmental scientist and experts to investigate scientifically and instead of blindly blaming the pharma industries should take more scientific measures to find out the exact source of environmental pollution and try to mitigate the same.

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