Worst air quality on Deepavali in four years

Toxic air: Heavy smog seen in the Capital a day after Deepavali celebrations.   | Photo Credit: Sushil Kumar Verma

The air pollution in Delhi on Deepavali and day after was the worst in the last four years, according to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) data. The 24-hour average Air Quality Index (AQI) based on data from 38 monitoring stations from across the Capital was 435 on Sunday, which falls in the ‘severe’ category.

Bursting of firecrackers was witnessed across Delhi on Deepavali night even though a ban was imposed on its sale. Local emissions worsened the quality of air in the city.

The Delhi police said they received over 2,000 PCR calls in connection with bursting of firecrackers and seized over 1,300 kg of crackers from across the city.

The AQI in Gurugram, Noida, Greater Noida, Ghaziabad and Faridabad was also in the ‘severe’ category. By afternoon, the sky turned cloudy and light showers were reported in many parts of Delhi with a moderate wind speed that brought some relief as it helped in dispersion of pollutants.

The Met Department said that under the influence of fresh western disturbance the wind speed went up to around 25 km per hour.

Quick recovery predicted

SAFAR, the air quality monitoring agency of the Ministry of Earth Sciences, said conditions are favourable for a quick recovery from the situation caused due to local emissions (firecrackers) as well as stubble fire-related pollutants. “Effective stubble fire counts (with sufficient potential) estimated from SAFAR-multi-satellite products were significantly reduced to around 350 on Saturday in contrast to around 2,586, a day before. In view of this, stubble burning share of PM2.5 in Delhi's air is almost negligible and estimated at around 4% for Sunday,” SAFAR said.

It added that better ventilation condition is likely to prevail now for faster dispersion and scattered rainfall is also likely to help improve the air quality.

In its forecast, SAFAR said: “The AQI is likely to start improving and reach the ‘very poor’ category on November 16 and may touch the poor category in case of enough rains. The AQI is forecast to stay in the middle-end of ‘very poor’ category on November 17 and 18.”

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Jan 16, 2021 5:57:44 AM |

Next Story