Delhi's air quality severe, relief unlikely soon

Delhi's air quality severe, relief unlikely soon

Delhiites on Tuesday morning woke up to extremely polluted air as the AQI was measured to be in the "severe" category, with overall Air Quality Index at 761 as PM10 was the dominant pollutant, said the India Meteorogical Department (IMD).

Visibility remained poor as the city's air quality deteriorated, fed by smoke from farm fires in neighbouring states of Punjab and Haryana, data from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) showed. Stubble burning share in PM2.5 in Delhi's air is estimated at 22 per cent for Tuesday.

The city's air quality index (AQI) stood at 477, the highest since November 3 a year ago when it was 494, according to Central Pollution Control Board data. "Tomorrow AQI is likely to improve to the lower end of severe to higher end of very poor owing to a forecasted change in transport level wind direction and marginally better ventilation condition", SAFAR said. The city witnessed seven "severe" air days in November past year.

This is the sixth "severe" air day on the trot in Delhi.

Delhi recorded a 24-hour average air quality index (AQI) of 476, which falls in the "severe" category.

An AQI between 0 and 50 is considered "good", 51 and 100 "satisfactory", 101 and 200 "moderate", 201 and 300 "poor", 301 and 400 "very poor", and 401 and 500 "severe". "If people burst crackers, pollution levels can increase to the "severe" to "severe plus" (emergency) category", he said.

The levels of PM2.5 finer particles which can even enter the bloodstream in Delhi-NCR were 605 g/m3 at 8 am around ten times the safe limit of 60 g/m3. For the past many years, every year ahead of winters the air quality in New Delhi becomes hazardous. Smog is seen daily in the morning and evening. He said that this is the need to unite with all Delhiites and fight against corona and pollution.

As Delhi faces another tryst with air pollution, a nine-year-old climate activist, Licypriya Kangujam, has appealed to the government to declare health emergency in Delhi, emphasising that people are choking due to the noxious air.

"A marginal improvement is likely on Thursday and Friday due to change in the wind direction, but it will not be substantial", he said.

Related Articles