A new survey conducted by CSIR — Council of Scientific and Industrial Reseach has warned that smokeless CNG run vehicles boasts cancer risk as they emit “nanocarbons”. It is to be noted that CNG — “Compressed natural gas” was made mandatory for buses running in Delhi to curb the pollution in the capital due to smoke coming out of diesel-run vehicles. Although, CNG-run bus are smokeless but not disease free. In fact diesel-run bus boasts the risk of asthma but CNG-run buses are even more dangerous.
Dr MO Garg, director general of CSIR said that the survey was conducted on small scale and scientists analysed atmospheric pollution in Delhi and found CNG-run bus poses serious threat and CSIR has taken it very seriously and appropriate steps will be taken to prevent the potential hazard it poses to humans. Garg further added that he has informed the central government for further follow up. While commenting on the long time taken to identify such a threat, he said that everyone considered natural gas as a clean fuel as it does not release any visible smoke when compared to vehicle running on diesel, thus it lead to negligence towards the potential hazard possessed by it.
He explained that the study doesn’t say to ban the natural gas, as it is a clean fuel, however when it is used in internal combustion engines like in vehicles it releases nanocarbons.
The study was conducted in partnership with a professor of Alerta University. For the study, researchers installed a device in exhaust of CNG-run DTC bus in Delhi that measures the particles emitted from the exhaust.
The results were mind-boggling, said Garg. Researchers were shocked to see traces of nanocarbons coming out of the exhaust. Nanocarbons are carbon particles that are of nano dimensions and are usually produced with the help of nanotechnology. These nanocarbons once released into the atmosphere get in humans body via lungs and then enters in bloodstreams. In worst case nanocarbons can lead to cancer.
“These nanoparticles are rich in polynuclear aromatic, having huge surface area. They are also carcinogenic. I have been telling government that we need to look at this situation more seriously,” he Garg.
The study has raised the alarm for the citizens living cities since in these areas buses run mostly on CNG also, it boasts the highest chances of cancer. Government should take this seriously as it risks several lives.