An Assessment of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) in Metal industries of Delhi

Malvika Khullar • Puja Gupta

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(English, 6 pages)

Abstract

With growing realization and concern for our health, the focus on Indoor Air Quality has increased. Exposure to indoor air pollution is responsible for nearly 2 million excess deaths in developing countries and for some 4% of the global burden of disease. Today it is critical that the industry be familiar with the environmental hazards that employees are subjected to in the workplace. Iron & steel and other manufacturing industries, foundries and forges produce a lot of pollutants in the indoor environment. Exposures to mineral dusts, metal fumes, products of combustion, resin bonding systems, physical noise and heat and vibration hazards may seriously impact the health of workers in foundries. The study aimed at assessing Indoor Air Quality in Metal industries of Delhi in Mayapuri industrial area. The study was carried out in 3 phases. In the first phase, the study collated awareness about Indoor Air Quality and related health effects amongst the owners and employees working in the enterprises. In the second phase, the study involved monitoring of the randomly selected enterprises in terms of CO2, PM2.5, PM10 and presence of dampness and molds in the enterprises. The third phase involved spreading awareness regarding Indoor Air Quality amongst the sample. Highlights of the study are: Majority of the owners were aware about the concept of Indoor Air Quality and its relationship with productivity and health of a person. They could also cite some of the health impacts caused due to poor Indoor Air Quality. In spite of their wisdom on Indoor Air Quality, there were no monitoring and maintenance provisions in their enterprises. Also, none of the owners provided their employees personal protective equipment (PPE) and any information or training regarding Indoor Air Quality and its health hazards. Majority of the employees were unaware of the concept of Indoor Air Quality. The employees could neither relate health with Indoor Air Quality nor showed any interest in improving the same. It was seen that there was a moderately high level of CO2 concentrations in the enterprises, mainly due to insufficient ventilation in the enterprises. PM2.5 concentrations were found to be poor and were almost double than its acceptable limits. While it was seen that PM10 concentrations were within their acceptable limits. It was observed that in majority enterprises presence of molds and dampness was observed. It was observed on walls and ceilings. The areas near the walls and places with molds were surrounded by a bad odor. This study has been helpful in providing clear direction towards the Indoor Air Quality in Metal industries operating in Mayapuri. It also highlights the awareness regarding Indoor Air Quality amongst the sample. The study concludes that there is a sense of knowledge regarding Indoor Air Quality amongst the owners/managers of the enterprises but a huge scope in monitoring and maintenance provisions. The need for spreading awareness about IAQ and its related health effects were highlighted which would improve Indoor Air Quality in industries. The study showcased a clear scope for awareness generation and training amongst the owners and employees of the enterprises regarding Indoor Air Quality. The study suggests surveying of health status in metal industries and similar research in other industries. The findings were also shared with competent authorities to sensitize them towards poor Indoor Air Quality in the metal industries.

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Journal

International Journal of Environment, Agriculture and Biotechnology

The International Journal of Environment, Agriculture and Biotechnology (IJEAB) is an internation... see more