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The Scents of Gurugram

For a few years now there has been an expressed need to regulate volatile organic compounds from organic solvents in paints and varnishes by means of legal measures. Many of these toxic solvents continue to be replaced by more environmentally friendly, water-soluble substances. While we may find smaller amounts of compounds such as benzene or toluene, water-soluble substances are much more ubiquitous. These are less reactive, which can have a positive effect on the formation of ground-level ozone with some of these oxygenated components having the ability to form secondary organic aerosols and thus contribute to the formation of particulate matter.

At this point however, while it is not clear how this amount compares to primary urban aerosol sources, there establishes the need for a more comprehensive research aimed at measuring a broad range of compounds at very low quantities to determine the fingerprint of VOC emission sources within a radius of about one kilometer. Since many of the trace gases are odorous, data may be able to reflect the characteristic scent of any city. In this respect Gurugram is quite an extraordinary city. We can find mainly traces of construction solvents & adhesives, food preparation synthetics and solvents that humans associate which define smell of the city. We may be amused to find compounds associated with cosmetics and detergents also in the air. There is already a evidence of silicone oils contained in many cosmetic and cleaning products that leave such a characteristic fingerprint in Gurugram urban air.

The Scents of Gurugram
– Rajneesh Wadhwa

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