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CSE study identifies 14 new pollution hot spots in Delhi-NCR, points to local pollution

By | Edited by Amit Chaturvedi, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Jun 07, 2021 07:45 AM IST

The CSE also said that lockdowns improved the air quality in Delhi-NCR this year as well but not as effectively as last year due to the 2021 curbs being shorter and lesser stringent.

A fresh analysis of the pollution data in and around the National Capital Region (NCR) has revealed that 14 new locations recorded higher than average deterioration in air quality in winter time. The analysis has been done by Delhi-based think tank Centre for Science and Environment (CSE).

A view of India Gate blanketed in heavy haze in New Delhi.(Amal KS/HT File Photo)

The CSE said that these 14 hot spots recorded higher concentration of air pollutants than the mean of recognised hot spots - 197 micrograms per cubic metre. These locations are Alipur, DTU, ITO, Nehru Nagar, Patparganj, Sonia Vihar and Vivek Vihar in Delhi, Sector 1 and 116 in Noida, Loni, Sanjay Vihar and Indirapuram in Ghaziabad, Knowledge Park V in Greater Noida and Bulandshahr, according to the CSE study.

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The think tank said this points towards impact of local pollution.

The CSE also said that lockdowns improved the air quality in Delhi-NCR this year as well but not as effectively as last year due to the 2021 curbs being shorter and lesser stringent.

"In 2020, partial lockdown started on March 12 with hard lockdown kicking in on March 25, which was lifted in phase-wise manner from May 18. Then the partial lockdown also brought PM2.5 levels down by 20 per cent, but the hard lockdown reduced it by another 35 per cent," the CSE said.

Lifting of restrictions from May 18 had led to 28 per cent rise in PM2.5 levels, it said.

Meteorology would be partly responsible for this trend, but it could also be a reflection of weakening of pollution control-measures and efforts in the city and region, it said.

Traffic intensity was also comparatively higher in 2021, it added.

The CSE analysis also showed that there were 27 "very poor" days in terms of air quality this February-March compared to 17 in 2020 and 12 in 2019.

Days meeting the air quality standard also plummeted this spring to just two. The year 2020 had 16 and 2019 had six days when the standard was met, it said.

(With inputs from agencies)

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