Air Pollution Leaves No Respite For Delhi This Season

Editorials News | May-17-2019

Air Pollution Leaves No Respite For Delhi This Season

It is in the middle of summer, but the levels of air pollution in Delhi are almost as bad as in winter, which highlights the problem of bad air in the capital.

The air quality on Monday was in the "very poor" category, exacerbated by the westerly winds that bring dust from neighboring states, the burning of stubble in parts of Punjab and Haryana, and forest fires in Uttarakhand. There have been four "very poor" days of air quality in the last week and the average concentrations of PM 2.5 (respirable fine particles of contamination) often exceeded 250 μg / m3 which four times the national safety standard.

The concentrations of PM 2.5 have exceeded 500 μg / m3 in Anand Vihar, Bawana and Rohini, according to data compiled by the Delhi-based environmental communications initiative of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

Heavy rainfalls were recorded by the IMD (Indian Meteorological Department) in different parts of the national capital on the night of Monday, eliminating the scorching heat and increased pollution, with the Air Quality Index (AQI) dropping slightly 322 at 4pm 311 at 11pm. The AQI is calculated on a scale of 0-500 with a score of 0-50 considered "good", 51-100 "satisfactory", 101-200 "moderate", 201-300 "bad", 301-400 "very bad "and 401-500" severe ".

Environmental scientists, however, reported that this little drop in pollution could be temporary, as it was due to rain, and pollution will remain in the "poor" or "very poor" category at least until May 16th, because of recurring dust storms.

Ghaziabad was on Monday the most polluted city in the country with an Air Quality Index (AQI) of 384 according to CPCB data. The neighbor Noida was the second most polluted city with an AQI value of 347.

East Municipal Corporation officials, the New Delhi City Council and the public works department said that they have been spraying water, covering construction sites, mechanically sweeping roads regularly to combat dust pollution, but pollution levels are not They reflect these actions.

Poor quality of air in Delhi has been aggravated by the westerly winds which bring dust from neighboring Rajasthan and Haryana and the below-normal pre-monsoon rains in north-western India, leading to extremely dry and dusty conditions. According to the data published by the Department of Meteorology of India (IMD), the pre-monsoon rainfall between March 1 and May 8 in north-western India is 37% lower than the average for the long period.

The minutes of the meeting held by the working group on the gradual response action plan (GRAP) on May 8 show that a sudden increase in particle concentration in Delhi-NCR was reported to the "very poor" category and further, moving towards the "severe" Category as a result of a new cloud of dust emitted from western Rajasthan and northern Gujarat arriving in Delhi on May 8.

By: Preeti Narula


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