‘Living near busy roads raises dementia risk’Study Suggests Pollutants Can Enter Brain Via Blood Stream Leading To Nerve Problems

Bengaluru: Jan 06 2017

Study Suggests Pollutants Can Enter Brain Via Blood Stream Leading To Nerve Problems
People who live ne ar roads laden with heavy traffic have a higher risk of developing dementia than those living further away possibly because pollutants enter their brains via the blo od stream, according to rese archers in Canada.A study in The Lancet me dical journal found that peo ple who lived within 50 met res of busy roads had a 7% higher chance of developing dementia compared to those who lived 200 metres away from high-traffic roadways.

Lead scientist Dr Hong Chen analysed records of 6.5 million Ontario residents aged 20 to 85 and found 2,43,611cases of dementia between 2001and 2012. Then they mapped residents’ proximity to roadways using postal codes. The increase in the risk of developing dementia went down to 4% if people lived 50 to 100 metres from major traffic, and to 2% if they lived within 101 to 200 metres. At more than 200 metres, the elevated risk faded away .

“Air pollutants can get into the blood stream and lead to inflammation, which is linked with cardiovascular disease and diabetes. This study suggests pollutants that can get into the brain via the blood stream can lead to neurological problems,“ said Ray Copes, a health expert at Public Health Ontario, who conducted the study with colleagues from Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences.

Population growth and urbanisation has placed many people close to areas with heavy traffic, and with growing rates of dementia even a modest effect from near-road exposure can pose a large public health burden. Other results from the study suggested a connection between dementia and exposure to two common traffic pollutants, nitrogen dioxide and fi ne particles of sooty material generated by diesel engines.

The WHO estimates the number of people with dementia in 2015 at 47.5 million, and the number is rising rapidly as life expectancy increases and societies age. It is starting to overtake heart disease as a major cause of death in some developed countries. Tom Dening of the Centre for Old Age and Dementia in UK said, “It is unlikely that Ontario has the worst air quality in the world, so the risks might be even greater in cities that are habitually wrapped in smog.“

Courtesy by: The Times of india

‘City Speed Is 11kmph,More Water Shortage,Power Demand,Landfills’10m Bengalureans lose 60cr hours, Rs 3,700cr a year to road congestion

Bengaluru: Jan 06 2017

10m Bengalureans lose 60cr hours, Rs 3,700cr a year to road congestion
RMP 2031: City Speed Is 11KmphMore Water Shortage, Power Demand, Landfills

Here’s a picture of Bengaluru, and it’s not too pretty: a smoking, fuel-guzzling, congested metropolis where citizens spend many hours on the roads, which is hitting productivity and translating into huge losses. All because the city lacks a robust public transport system.It is perhaps the most unnerving revelation made about economic impact due to congestion in Bengaluru.

The Revised Master Plan 2031 that the Bangalore Development Authority put out in the public domain on Wednesday, said 1.18 crore citizens waste 60 crore (600 million) man hours annually. And this translates to Rs 3,700 crore, including Rs 1,350 crore on fuel alone, and the rest on productivity (man hours) loss.

The lack of a public transport network has been dealt with in detail in the RMP. Over 90 lakh trips are made in a day by Bengalureans, which means every citizen in making one trip a day. But BMTC only caters to half of the load.

BDA admits that the shortage of public transport options has increased the number of private vehicles on the road, adding to congestion and reducing vehicle speed to 11kmph in 2015.

Fuel losses amount to Rs 50 crore annually by the citizen -almost 2.8 lakh litres are wasted per hour a day in the city.

A BDA source told TOI, “The RMP has also conducted origin and destination (OD) surveys across 500 zones in BBMP limits to understand the traffic models in each zone, and where and how people move. Some data was gathered by manual collection of data and photographs and also from secondary sources like BMTC, BMRCL and DULT etc. This will help us come out with effective plans for transport like the Metro, light rail, suburban rail and buses.“

BDA analysis says that traffic congestion will triple its effect on the business sector, and the share of public transport mode (mainly bus) will decrease to 36% from the existing 47% by 2031.

The RMP has focused on adopting various elements of `travel demand management’ using the origin-destination studies from the Comprehensive Traffic and Transportation Study in 2008. And of course, on integrating with land

REVISED MASTER PLAN FORESEES SCARCITY, DEPENDENCE ON RENEWABLE RESOURCES

WATER | CONSERVE TO MEET DEMAND

Water scarcity is being reasoned as one of the major causes for the slipping livability quotient of Bengaluru.According to the RMP 2031 document, by 2051, water shortage will be around 69.45tmcft despite adopting shortand mid-term solutions to increase conservation and draw more from river basins.

BWSSB supplies 1470 MLD (million litres per day) of which 46% is lost through unaccounted water flow (illegal connections). But that still does not cater to all the outer areas of the city yet.

Water demand will be 5,340 MLD (50tmcft) for a population of over 20 million by 2031. This includes 3,920 MLD for domestic potable use and another 2,745 MLD for non-potable and commercial consumption.

“We have 29tmcft awarded from the Cauvery Water Tribunal but the distribution lines for entire Bengaluru city are not yet ready. That is why the crisis deepens. We’ve planned to increase our Local Planning Area jurisdiction to 1219 sqkm of Bengaluru, beyond the existing BBMP limits, to cap haphazard development in gram panchayat areas under the Bengaluru Metropolitan Area and also to ensure planned infrastructure for resource access to all in the 1219 sqkm area,“ a BDA official said. BWSSB is also to expand its coverage area for supply of drinking water and sewerage connections to the entire city. One of the key concerns is to reduce unaccounted water flow which stands at 46% at present.

POWER | GRID DEPENDENCE FALLS, RENEWABLE ENERGY IS IN

Although the government analyzes the power distribution quality to be fairly good, citizens don’t agree. Power cuts, power quality supply has moved many away from the grid and opt for rooftop solar power systems. However, RMP forecasts dependency on renewable energy and estimates Bengaluru can generate 14,880 Million Units of solar power by 2031 and 313 MU from biomass.

The power demand is growing at a flat rate of 9.5%, according to details from Bescom.Bengaluru draws 50% of the power generated and supplied in the entire state -12,455 MU per day and 2161 MW is the peak load during peak hours.

Staggering power, regularizing irrigational pump sets and various measures of capping waste has not met the demand. Thus, pushing the tariff remains the only option for the company but as it increases tariff, more big consumers reduce dependency on the grid, making it a vicious cycle in the sector.

An average Bengalurean already consumes 1,219 units of power a day (according to 2014 data) which was just 827 units a day in 2005. The city has 80% of domestic consumers, 11.8% of consumers include commercial, while the share of agricultural and industrial consumers is negligible. RMP estimates that energy demand will grow by 11.6% in the city by 2031.

SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT | BIGGER PILES OF FILTH

Although this seems to be much under control for the state government, waste generation estimates for 2031 are shocking. Per capita waste generation is likely to grow by 1.3% a year -from 644gm per day to 905gm.

This means Bengaluru will generate 18,390 million tonnes of municipal waste by 2031, with a population of over 20 million. It generated 7,826MT in 2015. By 2020, the figure is likely to touch the 10,787MT mark. All this only pushes the requirement of more land for landfills. But that is not the only alternative BDA proposes. Landfill requirement by 2031 is going to be 30%, says the RMP.

But a deeper look shows 58% of municipal waste is biodegradable, as per SWM Master Plan 2009. It is estimated that about 7,000MT waste will be dumped, despite processing which requires more land. Land will be identified jointly by BDA and BBMP to identify and use as landfills.

Courtesy  by : The Times of India

‘Rental realty gains in crunch times’

January 05, 2017

 BengaluruReal estate, in particular, is bearing the brunt of the currency ban due to a high dependence on unaccounted cash transactions, with residential sales taking a direct hit.

Rental realty gains in crunch timesRental realty gains in crunch times - Image

Rental property market is edging out capital property market now as end users await clarity before deciding on outright purchase. The residential property market across Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru, Pune and Chennai has witnessed an increase of 812% in average weighted rental values against dormant capital values for the year 2016, property brokers said.

Real estate, in particular, is bearing the brunt of the currency ban due to a high dependence on unaccounted cash transactions, with residential sales taking a direct hit. Home sales have come to a halt across major cities.

“Rental market remains strong and transactions have not been impacted due to dem onetisation.With customers postponing property purchase decisions and expecting some demonetisation-led correction in prices, rental market will benefit in the short term.We expect rental prices to grow 5-8% in next one year,“ said Amit Agarwal, founder and CEO of nobroker.com.

“Surprisingly, we made our maximum revenue in the month when demonetisation was announced!“ Nobroker.com, that deals in rental transactions, has seen a 25% jump in rental transactions in 2016.

According to property brokers, postponing of purchase decision is benefiting rental transactions and the demand for rented houses has been going up across localities. The end users’ preference, for now, has shifted to renting property and waiting for an expected softening on prices and home loan rates, thereby enhancing affordability.

“In the short term, rental demand is likely to increase, leading to a possible hardening of rental yields subject to inflow of rental supply, of course. For some of the popular localities such as Chhatarpur in Delhi, Mumbai suburb Malad (East), Koramangla in Bengaluru and Kondapur in Hyderabad, we are already witnessing rental yields crossing the 4%-mark post demonetisation,“ said Sudhir Pai, CEO of Magicbricks.com.

Magicbricks.com, the property portal, has seen a shift in preference for about 7% buyers whose initial choice was to buy a property, but are now looking for rental options after demonetisation.

These buyers are choosing a rent in the interim period, deferring purchases of property as they wait and watch to see how pricing and supply unfolds.

According to the Anurag Jhanwar, Business head (Consulting and Data Insights), PropTiger.com and Makaan.com, 2016 was promising to break the falling trend of residential launches and sales, with both of them showing conso lidation with marginal increase over the last 4-5 quarters; the momentum was broken; although temporarily, on account of the demonetisation drive.

“At present, the residential prices (capital values) largely remained range-bound across the top nine cities of India…The impact of demonetisation is expected to fade as we move to the April-June quarter. Excess cash flows and a likely reduction in liability of RBI and tax inflow on account of income declaration scheme is expected to provide ammunition to the government to announce measures to boost investment, and hence, demand for housing and price increase in some growth corridors across cities,“ Jhanwar said.

Courtesy by: The Economic Times

Middle class will benefit from ‘Prime Minister Housing Standard Operating Procedure’

Jan 05 2017

Those with annual income of up to Rs 12 lakh in urban areas would soon be eligible for 4% rebate in interest for a home loan up to Rs 9 lakh while 3% rebate can be availed on Rs 12 lakh loan by those who earn up to Rs 18 lakh annually , government sources said.The government may al so release the entire interest subsidy amount upfront, which would help those struggling to make the initial payment. The new interest subsidy scheme for home loans was announced by the Prime Minister last week, but the details have not been unveiled so far.

Sources in the Union housing ministry said the benefits of the scheme will cover the middle class in addition to the poor, who are already eligible for higher interest rebate in urban areas. They said the details of implementing this scheme are being worked out and would be announced soon. An amount of Rs 1,000 crore has already been earmarked for meeting the expenses for the interest subsidy .

Till now, those with annual income up to Rs 6 lakh were eligible to get 6.5% interest subsidy for housing loans of up to Rs 6 lakh. So far only 20,000 people have availed this. In such cases, govern ment releases Rs 2.3 lakh upfront as cumulative interest subsidy to the beneficiaries.This results in reduced effective housing loan and equated monthly instalment (EMI).

Housing ministry officials said the new norms announced by the PM would be applicable only in those cases where people go for fresh home loan under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna (PMAY).Under PMAY, applicants can get interest subsidy only if they own no house anywhere in the country . “Effectively , the new norms will bring more income groups under the interest rebate scheme and will come as a relief for the middle class. For example, if you take a Rs 30 lakh loan, but have less than Rs 18 lakh annual income, you can avail the rebate in interest for the first Rs 12 lakh loan. For the rest you have to pay the full interest as charged by your bank,“ a source said.

Courtesy by: Times of India

‘Bengaluru Development Authority plan’ Scrap Green Belt, Shift Job Hubs to Outskirts

Bengaluru: Jan 05, 2017

The growth of Bengaluru could shift to its outskirts if the government decides to implement the strategy of optimal growth.In its preliminary presentation on the revised master plan 2031, the Bangalore Deve lopment Authority has indicated that banning all commercial developments in the heart of the city and moving employment zones to the outskirts is the best way to go about the city’s growth. The authority will do away with green belts and agriculture zones to look at a more sustainable model of retaining green cover. The details have been put up on the BDA portal for public opinion. Proposing 13 employment nodes on the city’s outskirts and development of the fringes, the optimal plan seeks to have a differential strategy of transportation to these employment zones and create a network of lakes and stream buffer zones, with suitable hie rarchy of regional parks.

Putting up three models before the public and seeking their comments and suggestions, the BDA has said the first two options -containment of development and corridor-driven development -may not be feasible. The BDA has justified that the containment policy would mean sealing the population accommodation in the city and losing the economic vitality of Bengaluru to satellite cities and towns. It would also mean that the city could only accommodate a population of 1.54 crore. Listing the demerits of corridor-driven development, the authority cited that a higher population may not be sustainable, besides the increased traffic congestion and highly insufficient water supply for the population by 2031, estimated to be 2.47 crore.

On its plans on agriculture zones and green belts, the BDA has said it will create a network of lakes and parks in and around the employment nodes to sustain green cover. “We will try to create more Cubbon Parks and Lalbaghs rather than retain agriculture zones which will anyways be lost to the exponential development in Bengaluru,“ said Mahendra Jain, additional chief secretary , urban development department.

The bigger concern for the BDA, however, will be to provide potable water irrespective of the growth model chosen. For transportation, the authority has recommended 211km of Metro, 63km of monorail or LRT and 227km of bus rapid transport system.

Courtesy by: The Times of India

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