Gurugram breathed cleanest air since October 8
Gurugram Residents woke up to the cleanest air of the season on Wednesday, with Gurugram scoring 104 (‘moderate’) on the Central Pollution Control Board’s (CPCB) air quality index (AQI), bettering the AQI of 125, recorded on November 19.
The last time better air quality was recorded in the city was on October 8, when the AQI was 78 (‘satisfactory’).
This marked the second consecutive day of ‘moderate’ air quality in Gurugram, following Tuesday’s AQI of 186. The improvement in air quality was attributed to strong surface winds, which had a speed of around 20 kilometres per hour, during the day, according to the ministry of earth science’s early air quality warning system for Delhi-NCR.
The concentration of finer particulate matter, having a diameter smaller than 2.5 micrometres (PM2.5), was 85ug/m3 on Wednesday, down from Tuesday’s maximum reading of 125ug/m3. Last week, the PM2.5 level was averaging around 180ug/m3, against the safe limit of 60ug/m3.
Sachin Panwar, a city-based air quality expert, said, “This is an unusual improvement for this time of the year, when pollution levels tend to start peaking. It is all due to the prevailing meteorology, which is expected to keep pollution levels low, at least for another day.”
As per the CPCB’s prediction, air quality is likely to deteriorate on Thursday but will continue to remain in the upper end of the ‘moderate’ to the lower end of the ‘poor’ category.
“The air quality is likely to deteriorate further on Friday and remain in ‘poor’ category due to slow wind speed, which is expected to dip to about 10kmph,” a senior scientist at the CPCB’s air quality lab in Delhi said.
Despite the improvements in air quality, which have prevailed this month, polluting activities are still continuing on the ground in major NCR towns, according to the CPCB’s latest inspection report, a copy of which is available on the CPCB website. The report notes that construction activities and waste burning are some of the primary causes of air pollution in the city.
Of the 800-odd cases of construction and demolition activity reported from across the NCR, Gurugram accounts for almost 10%. The city also accounts for almost 10% of the total of 197 instances of waste burning observed across the NCR by CPCB’s inspection teams.