The union territory of India and the joint capital of Punjab and Haryana- Chandigarh will now be monitoring the carbon footprint in the city. Despite being one of the green cities having around 45 per cent of green cover, when it comes to air quality, it is still a part of 112 Indian cities that do not meet the prescribed standards. A report by The IE noted that the air quality of the city home to 11 lakh people, has been deteriorating owing to vehicular pollution and emissions generated within the neighbouring states like Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.
It is to note that Chandigarh does not have any major industrial area and in fact has a per capita density of 878 vehicles per 1,000 population. In order to reduce the carbon footprint, the city has now its own Carbon Watch- an app that will be accessing the carbon footprint of all individuals residing there. Everyone can access the app, however, there are some specific options for those who have been living in Chandigarh, so that a detailed study can be compiled.
According to the report, the mobile app can be downloaded via a QR code in Android supported smartphones. To be sure, carbon footprint can be counted as the amount of greenhouse gases (mainly carbon dioxide) that is being released into the atmosphere by an individual. Chandigarh residents will have to fill in some details that include information on Energy, Water, Waste Generation and Transport (Vehicular movement). Under the sections, people will have to inform about their water consumption, electricity units that are consumed every month (monthly electricity bills and if solar energy is used), waste generation of the family and what kind of transportation do each individual and their family members use.
This will allow the app to calculate the carbon footprint of the individual. Apart from this, information on carbon footprint at the national level and world average of the emission will be given. Citing Debendra Dalia, Director, UT Environment Department, the report said that this will make people “Climate-Smart Citizens” and will keep them alert regarding carbon footprint. The idea behind this app is to make people aware of their carbon contribution so that some steps can be taken to reduce it.
The mobile application, as per the report, is capable of suggesting methods that will help reduce the carbon footprints. For each individual, the app will come up with a suggestion that they can adopt to reduce their carbon footprint.