Expert's Opinion

Some Indian Cities the Most Polluted in the World—Not a Great Claim to Fame

By Abby Bailey, director of marketing and communications, EDANA | August 8, 2016

Water and air pollution present major challenges to country's development

Samir Gupta, Managing Director  of the Business Co-ordination House in New Delhi, India recently spoke to EDANA about the challenges facing India, its population, and the filtration industry regarding pollution and public health. What follows is a summary of his comments.

As the development in India picks up, there are many environmental challenges that are confronting this process. Water pollution is a major environmental issue on account of untreated sewage, agricultural runoff and a huge number unregulated small-scale businesses.

The air that the Indians breathe is also dangerously toxic. Last year the WHO assessed 1622 cities worldwide for PM 2.5 and found India home to 13 of the 20 cities with the most polluted air. While China has attracted global interest and criticism for its pollution, more cities in India than in China see extremely high levels of such pollution, thanks to low vehicle emissions standards, the burning of fuel, wood and biomass, traffic congestion and major construction activities—among others.

The quality of the air in India, especially in states like New Delhi, Mumbai, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu is deteriorating rapidly, with high levels of particulate matter and an increasing level of poisonous gases. With an expected manufacturing growth of 9.5% for 2015-16, and while positive for the local economy, this growth is not always supported by the best manufacturing practices, causing a further dent on the overall quality of products and processes manufactured in India.

To counter the harmful effects of this positive growth, there has been a call to action from government, legislative bodies, consumers, and manufacturers to match the pace of development with the urgent need for a sustainable environment. 

The filtration industry is also being pushed for better offerings. Analysts forecast the market for air purifiers in India is projected to grow at a CAGR of around 40% until 2020. Similarly, the HVAC market is expected to grow 12%, the automotive filter market up to 9%, and the market for air pollution control equipment is anticipated to grow by 15%. 

Nonwovens, a type of material that is manufactured to address certain needs and formed by either heat, agitation or a chemical reaction, can be engineered to meet exacting specifications for the filtration of air, liquid, bacteria, dust, gas and a myriad of other areas. In filtration, nonwoven products have evolved from simply replacing the traditional paper, cloth, glass and carbon filters, to becoming the new media of choice—one which offers the Indian market an option to address their need for better solutions.

Regardless of whether you need to purify a liquid, gas or other medium, the Indian filtration market is sure to grow at a significant speed, with new filter media technologies introduced to improve the quality of air, water, and products, and processes. To support this growth, industry professionals need an environment to exchange ideas share knowledge at a global level.

Building on the outstanding success of the first two editions of the Filtrex conference in India for nonwovens filter media in 2010 and 2011, and thanks to popular demand from the stakeholders of this industry, the conference is again being offered in 2016. The conferences comes at a time when both Indian and global businesses and professionals can best use the information and opportunities to increase their contacts within this essential industry.

Filtrex India will be held in New Delhi from September 14-15, 2016. Information on the program and details about registration can be found on the EDANA website:


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