Mumbai to breathe easy this Deepavali

Ahmedabad not so much, says SAFAR

October 17, 2017 10:43 pm | Updated 10:43 pm IST - NEW DELHI

(FILES) This file photo taken on October 27, 2011 shows Indian children lighting fireworks for the Diwali festival in New Delhi.
India's top court ordered a temporary ban on the sale of firecrackers in New Delhi on October 9, 2017, ahead of the Diwali festival that leaves the city shrouded in toxic smog. The decision comes a little over a week before Diwali -- the Hindu festival of lights -- when Delhi fills with acrid smoke from celebratory firecrackers set off day and night, leaving an eye-burning haze.  / AFP PHOTO / Sajjad HUSSAIN

(FILES) This file photo taken on October 27, 2011 shows Indian children lighting fireworks for the Diwali festival in New Delhi. India's top court ordered a temporary ban on the sale of firecrackers in New Delhi on October 9, 2017, ahead of the Diwali festival that leaves the city shrouded in toxic smog. The decision comes a little over a week before Diwali -- the Hindu festival of lights -- when Delhi fills with acrid smoke from celebratory firecrackers set off day and night, leaving an eye-burning haze. / AFP PHOTO / Sajjad HUSSAIN

Deepavali this year won’t be as toxic in Mumbai and Pune as last year though Ahmedabad could see air quality deteriorate, according to a forecast from the Pune-based System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR).

“The air quality on this Diwali is going to be the best ever since SAFAR established in Mumbai in 2015. This is mainly due to widespread rain in and around Mumbai,” says the forecast.

However partly due to the burning of crackers, the share of PM2.5 is expected to rise by 20% during the festival as compared to normal. The share of PM2.5, in the total pollution load would touch 60-70%. Air quality between the October 18 and 22 would be ‘satisfactory,’ the forecast added. The south-west monsoon has not withdrawn from Pune and the rains would ensure that pollutants increase too much. “Due to this we expect air quality in Pune to be better than 2016,” the forecast added.

The outlook for Ahmedabad however, is not so salubrious. “Winds over Ahmedabad are very light and close to calm wind conditions from October 20. This is not good and favourable for accumulation of local firecracker emissions,” says the note.

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