Air Quality Analysis for Nashik, India

Summary of PM2.5 Pollution and Meteorology Forecast for Today at the state-level (more resources here)

India Air Quality Forecasts
Nashik lies on the banks of the Godavari river in Maharashtra at the western edge of the Deccan Plateau. It is 170 kms from the city of Mumbai and is an important cultural, IT, industrial and agricultural center in Maharashtra. There is a 910 MW coal fired power plant located at Eklahare, which is close to Nashik.  

Nashik lies at an elevation of almost 600 meters, resulting in cool temperate winters that are ideal for growing fruit, especially grapes for wine-making. 45 of the 78 wineries in India are in and around Nashik, resulting in its new name “wine-capital” of India. Over the years these have become industries in their own right by expanding production as well as hosting wine festivals that draw significant crowds. 

Emissions Inventory GridOther interesting facts about Nashik include; it is one of the sites of the Kumbh Mela that is held every 12 years; Indian currency and government stamp papers are printed at the Currency Note Press and India Security Press respectively; Deolali (a hill station in Nashik District is an important Indian Armed Forces base.

To assess Nashik’s air quality, we selected an airshed of 40km x 40km . This domain is further segregated into 1km grids, to study the spatial variations in the emission and the pollution loads.

Meteorology fields are important as they have a direct impact on air pollution concentrations. During periods of high precipitation or high speed winds, emissions from a city are swept away and do not have an impact on concentrations. On the other hand, during the winter months when temperatures and inversion heights are low, there is a greater impact of emissions on pollution concentrations. Low temperatures also affect behaviour through the need for space and water heating – which in turn has increases emissions.

We processed the NCEP Reanalysis global meteorological fields from 2010 to 2018 through the 3D-WRF meteorological model. A summary of the data for one year, averaged for the city’s airshed is presented below by month. Download the processed data which includes information on year, month, day, hour, precipitation (mm/hour), mixing height (m), temperature (C), wind speed (m/sec), and wind direction (degrees) – key parameters which determine the intensity of dispersion of emissions.

WRF Meteorology for Nashik

Multi-Pollutant Emission Inventory

We compiled an emissions inventory for the Nashik region for the following pollutants – sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), carbon monoxide (CO), non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOCs), carbon dioxide (CO2); and particulate matter (PM) in four bins (a) coarse PM with size fraction between 2.5 and 10 μm (b) fine PM with size fraction less than 2.5 μm (c) black carbon (BC) and (d) organic carbon (OC), for year 2015 and projected to 2030. In Phase 1, base year for all the calculations was 2015. In Phase 2, all the calculations are updated for year 2018.

Emissions Inventory We customized the SIM-air family of tools to fit the base information collated from disparate sources. Apart from the official reports, resource material ranges from GIS databases of land use, land cover, roads and rail lines, water bodies, built up area (represented in the adjacent figure), commercial activities (such as hotels, hospitals, kiosks, restaurants, malls, cinema complexes, traffic intersections, worship points, industrial hubs, and telecom towers), to population density and meteorology at the finest spatial resolution possible (1-km). A detailed description of these resources is published as a journal article in 2019, which also includes a summary of baselines and pollution analysis for 20 Indian cities.

This emissions inventory is based on available local activity and fuel consumption estimates for the selected urban airshed (represented in the grid above). This information is collated from multiple agencies ranging from the central pollution control board, state pollution control board, census bureau, national sample survey office, ministry of road transport and highways, annual survey of industries, central electrical authority, ministry of heavy industries, and municipal waste management, and publications from academic and non-governmental institutions.

For the road transport emissions inventory, besides the total number of vehicles and their usage information, we also utilized vehicle speed information to spatially and temporally allocate the estimated emissions to the respective grids. This is a product of google maps services. For the city of Nashik, we extracted the speed information for representative routes across the city for multiple days. This data is summarized below for a quick look.

Emissions Inventory Click here for gridded anime
Vehicle Speed Maps in a City

There are a number of medium and heavy industries in and around Nashik. Some of these include Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, Mahindra & Mahindra, Bosch, V.I.P., CEAT, ABB, Crompton Greaves, Siemens, Kirloskar Oil Engine, Glaxo.

Emission Sources in nashik Emission Sources in nashik Emission Sources in nashik
Emission Sources in nashik Emission Sources in nashik Emission Sources in nashik
Emission Sources in nashik Emission Sources in nashik Emission Sources in nashik

The summary for a city’s emissions inventory does not include natural emission sources (like dust storms, lightning, and seasalt) and seasonal open (agricultural and forest) fires. However, these are included in the overall chemical transport modeling in the national scale simulations. These emission sources are accounted in the concentration calculation as an external (also known as boundary or long-range) contribution to the city’s air quality.

Projections to 2030 under the business as usual scenario are influenced by the city’s social, economic, landuse, urban, and industrial layout and hence the projected (increasing and decreasing) rates that we assume are an estimate only. We based the vehicle growth rate on the sales projection numbers; industrial growth on the gross domestic product of the state; domestic sector, construction activities, brick demand, diesel usage in the generator sets, and open waste burning on population growth rates and notes from the municipalities on plans to implement waste management programs. We used these estimates to evaluate the trend in the total emissions and their likely impact on ambient PM2.5 concentrations through 2030.

The emissions inventory was then spatially segregated at a 0.01° grid resolution in longitude and latitude (equivalent of 1 km) to create a spatial map of emissions for each pollutant (PM2.5, PM10, SO2, NOx, CO and VOCs). The gridded PM2.5 emissions and the total (shares by sector) emissions are presented below.

Gridded PM2.5 Emissions (2018 and 2030)

Emissions Inventory Emissions Inventory

Total PM2.5 Emissions by Sector 2018-2030

Emissions Inventory Emissions Inventory Emissions Inventory

TRANS = transport emissions from road, rail, aviation, and shipping (for coastal cities); RESIDEN = residential emissions from cooking, heating, and lighting activities; INDUS = industrial emissions from small, medium, and heavy industries (including power generation); ALL.DUST = dust emissions from road re-suspension and construction activities; W.BURN = open waste burning emissions; DG.SETS = diesel generator set emissions; B.KILNS = brick kiln emissions (not included in the industrial emissions)

Total Estimated Emissions by Sector for 2018 (units – tons/year)

Transport emissions from road, rail, aviation, and shipping (for coastal cities) 1,950 2,050 750650 8,250 76,950 17,650 100
Residential emissions from cooking, heating, and lighting activities 1,000 1,050 200500150 14,050 1,700 100
Industrial emissions from small, medium, and heavy industries (including power generation) 18,000 19,150 1,500 750 38,250 38,850 11,850 2,150
Dust emissions from road re-suspension and construction activities 2,900 17,600 ------
Open waste burning emissions950 1,000 50550- 4,500 900-
Diesel generator set emissions500500250150 3,200 10,250 4,600 50
Brick kiln emissions (not included in the industrial emissions) 1,050 1,050 300400 1,000 12,300 1,450 400
26,350 42,400 3,050 3,000 50,850 156,900 38,150 2,800

Chemical Transport Modeling

We calculated the ambient PM2.5 concentrations and the source contributions, using gridded emissions inventory, 3D meteorological data (from WRF), and the CAMx regional chemical transport model. The model simulates concentrations at 0.01° grid resolution and sector contributions for the urban area, which include contributions from primary emissions, secondary sources via chemical reactions, and long range transport via boundary conditions (represented as “boundary” in the pie graph below).

nashik PM2.5 Monthly variations nashik PM2.5 Monthly variations

The ribbon graph shows the variation for average PM2.5 pollution by month. Due to precipitation during the monsoon, usually pollution levels dip and may fall within national air pollution standards, however most cities are unable to attain these standards at other times of the year. We consolidated all the PM2.5 data from the continuous monitoring stations operating within the modeling domain, for the period of 2018-19 and compared against the model results. The scatter plot presents a comparison of 24-hr average PM2.5 concentrations by month. Modeled data is for the urban parts of the city.

The following is a map of annual average PM2.5 pollution for the city of Nashik. The main sources contributing towards PM2.5 in 2018 are in the pie-chart on the left. The change in contributions in 2030 from different sources are shown on the right.

Nashik PM2.5 Source Contributions Nashik Ambient PM2.5 Concentrations Nashik PM2.5 Source Contributions

There is a temporal variation in source contributions and spatial contributions depending on meteorological factors. We have a map of monthly average PM2.5 levels as well as their source contributions for every month in the charts below.

Nashik PM2.5 Monthly Concentrations Nashik PM2.5 Source Apportionment

Satellite Data Derived Surface PM2.5 Concentrations

The results of satellite data derived concentrations are useful for evaluating annual trends in pollution levels and are not a proxy for on-ground monitoring networks. This data is estimated using satellite feeds and global chemical transport models. Satellites are not measuring one location all the time, instead, a combination of satellites provide a cache of measurements that are interpreted using global chemical transport models (GEOS-Chem) to represent the vertical mix of pollution and estimate ground-based concentrations with the help of previous ground-based measurements. The global transport models rely on gridded emission estimates for multiple sectors to establish a relationship with satellite observations over multiple years. These databases were also used to study the global burden of disease, which estimated air pollution as the top 10 causes of premature mortality and morbidity in India. A summary of PM2.5 concentrations for the period of 1998 to 2016 for the city of Nashik is presented below. The global PM2.5 files are available for download and further analysis @ Dalhousie University.

The graphs for other district PM2.5 concentrations for this period, maps of national averages, and year-wise changes are available here. The data for district level PM2.5 concentrations for 1998-2016 period for can downloaded here.


We present below a summary of the ambient monitoring data available under the National Ambient Monitoring Program (NAMP), operated and maintained by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB, New Delhi, India). In Nashik, as of November 2018, there are 0 continuous and 2 manual air quality stations in operation. An archive of all the data from the NAMP network from stations across India for the period of 2011-2015 is available here.

PM2.5 Source Contributions Ambient PM2.5 Concentrations PM2.5 Source Contributions

Resource Material

  • CPCB repository of continuous air monitoring data (Link)
  • CPCB List of non-attainment cities (Link)
  • Nashik Smart City Plan (Link)
  • Ambient Air Quality Data: Nashik, Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (Link)
  • New Nashik and Nashik Development Plan, City & Industrial Development Corporation of Maharashtra Limited (Link)
  • “Draft Action Plan for Severely Polluted Areas in Nashik Jurisdiction”, Sub-Regional Office, Maharashtra Pollution Control Board, Nashik. (2017) (Link)
  • “Action Plan for Industrial Cluster in Severely Polluted Area: Monitoring, sampling, analysis of Stack, Ambient Air Quality, Surface Water, Ground Water, Waste Water – Nashik”, Maharashtra Pollution Control Board. (2017) (Link)
  • “Nashik Rapid Mass transport feasibility study”,  Institute for Transportation and Development Policy. (2013) (Link)
  • “Human health risk assessment due to air pollution in 10 urban cities in Maharashtra, India”, Maji, J. K. et. al (2016) (Journal Article Link)
  • “A feasibility study for the locations of waste transfer stations in urban centers: a case study on the city of Nashik, India”, Yadav, V. et. al. (2016) (Journal Article Link)

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