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19 August 2020 to
21 August 2020
Nirmala Baduwal & Suresh Pokhrel
Over recent decades, the Hindu Kush Himalayan (HKH) region has been affected by rising emissions of air pollutants from urban, industrial, and rural sources. This has raised concerns about deteriorating air quality, impacts on health and visibility, changes in atmospheric heating and cooling, and changes in cloud microphysics and in the strength and timing of monsoon. Impacts of these pollutants are visible across the region.
ICIMOD’s Regional Programme on Atmosphere aims to improve understanding of air pollutant emissions, atmospheric processes and change, and impacts. It promotes mitigation and policy solutions and builds capacity and collaboration in the HKH and upwind regions.
Housed within the Regional Programme on Atmosphere, the Atmospheric Watch Initiative (AWI) focuses on studies that involve rigorous social and scientific analysis, using multiple data sets or combinations of field data, modelling, and remote-sensing analysis. These studies are expected to help influence policies and strategies in the region.
Since its establishment, the AWI, in collaboration with Nepali and Bhutanese government partners (Department of Environment and National Environment Commission, respectively), has set up state-of-the-art air quality monitoring stations with aerosol and trace gas measuring instruments in these countries. Among these instruments, the Aethalometer Model AE33 (manufactured by Aerosol doo) has been used as the primary instrument for the measurement of ambient black carbon concentration. This instrument requires regular servicing and calibration to ensure the highest quality of data.
The AWI is initiating a three-day regional online training workshop to enhance the capacity of its country partners on the basic working principles of the black carbon monitoring instrument and its daily operational aspects, maintenance, calibration, and troubleshooting.
The participants will receive online training guided by a team of scientists and engineers from the original manufacturer. Based on the lessons from this workshop, ICIMOD envisions future trainings on other air quality parameters such as particulate matter and trace gases.
The workshop will be attended by officials from the Department of Environment, Ministry of Forests and Environment – Government of Nepal; National Environment Commission, Government of Bhutan; Tribhuvan University; Kathmandu University; National Trust for Nature Conservation; and Real Time Solutions Pvt. Ltd.