Civic body plans to bring lime-coated roofs, thermocol sheets to 7,000 slum houses
To protect people from the blistering heat this summer, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) has launched a Heat Action Plan (HAP). Under the initiative, the AMC aims to reach out to 7,000 slum houses and put a lime coating on their rooftops.
The rooftops of many houses at Ramesh Dutt Colony in Hansol have been covered under the cool roof programme, which has brought down the maximum temperature inside the houses by 2-3 degree Celsius.
"We can feel the difference. Inside the house, the temperature is now tolerable. The roof coating has been really effective in bringing down temperatures," said one resident.
Many NGOs have joined hands with the AMC in this undertaking. Bharati Bhonsale of Mahila Housing Trust said, "In some slum pockets, we are distributing thermocol sheets which can absorb direct heat. Lime coating on rooftops is another exercise we are undertaking to protect people from the heat."
Cool rooftops help reduce the effect of heat.
"The low-cost solution can bring surface temperatures down and reduce indoor temperatures by up to 5 degree Celsius. This year, we have already covered 3,500 houses and we're going to cover a total of 5,000," said Dr Tejas Shah, nodal officer of HAP, AMC.
In addition to this, the AMC, in association with NGOs, has distributed butter milk and water at more than 1,000 points. "Despite spiking temperatures and the effect of urban heat island, people are not suffering much. The most vulnerable are slum dwellers. We have shielded them by providing them with cool rooftops and cool water. This has built their resilience to heat," said Dr Bhavin Solanki, incharge medical officer of health, AMC.
There has been a steep rise in temperatures. The mercury is hovering at around 44 degree Celsius. On Tuesday, the maximum temperature recorded in Ahmedabad was 43.4 degree Celsius, which was 2 degrees above normal. The minimum temperature recorded in city was 26.9 degree Celsius, one above normal.
Across the state, Surendranagar recorded the highest maximum temperature at 45 degree Celsius.
Between March 2018 to May 2018:
At present, westerly winds are prevailing at lower levels across the region. Maximum temperature is very likely to remain around 41-45 degree Celsius in parts of Saurashtra and Kutch and 40-44 degree Celsius across north Gujarat for the next two days.