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Urban On-Road Traffic Condition and Vehicular Emission in Kathmandu Valley
Enna Mool

Last modified: 2017-08-24


Air pollution is a burning and growing concern among all the people especially in urban area like Kathmandu Valley since few decades. It is very common to see people wearing masks or putting shawls to cover their noses and mouths to protect themselves from growing polluted air. With the increasing growth in the number in terms of both passenger and cargo diesel vehicles, the bad impact of diesel exhaust has been an increasing attention among the people. However, the studies on emissions from cargo diesel vehicles are still very scarce in case of Nepal. In this study, the flow rate along with emitter’s proportion of cargo diesel vehicles especially Truck, Tipper, Tanker, Pick-up, Tractor and Construction Vehicle were counted for the period of 8 hours in between 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. in six comparable and representative traffic routes within the Kathmandu Valley. These six locations were Kalanki (Tribhuvan Highway), Ghathaghar (Araniko Highway), Ekantakuna (On Ring Road (RR)1), Chabahil (On RR2), Kuleshwor (Inside RR1) and Sorakhutte (Inside RR2). The cost for general maintenance were obtained through maintenance survey to both owner/driver of vehicles and local maintenance center. Similarly, the estimation of tailpipe exhaust (PM2.5, CO, CO2, BC and SO2) for these type of vehicles before and after maintenance were determined using Microaethlometer (AE51) and Ratnoze 2 (Version 8). From the Road Count Survey (RCS), it was found that all the cargo diesel vehicles plying on the road were not the polluters. Only 36% of polluter vehicles dominated the average emission. Though the total fleet was dominated by Pick-up (48%) but most of the emitter vehicles were Truck (42%). The vehicle flow rate was maximum on highways followed by On RRs and Inside RRs during middle of non-peak hour. Similarly, RRs and highways were mostly polluted in comparison to Inside RRs. The black color plate (public) was mostly the emitter one with least emission by blue plate (NGOs/INGOs) among six plates. The cost for general maintenance (Engine Oil, Oil Filter, Diesel Filter and Air Filter) was comparatively cheap in terms of thousands. Regular general maintenance can substantially reduce vehicular emission level in great extent.

Keywords: Cargo diesel vehicle, General maintenance, Non-peak hour, RCS, Tailpipe exhaust

Note: The last objective is still pending and will be completed by 9th September, 2017.

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