Noida air quality improves as winds pick up

Published on Jan 25, 2023 11:31 PM IST

This is only the second day this month when the air quality was in the “moderate” category. The AQI was last in that category on January 15 in both cities, data showed

Dark clouds hover over the city skyline. (Sunil Ghosh/HT Photo)
Dark clouds hover over the city skyline. (Sunil Ghosh/HT Photo)

As wind speed improved over the National Capital Region (NCR), the air quality index (AQI) of Noida as well as that of Greater Noida entered the ”moderate” category on Wednesday, bringing a brief respite from the persistently high pollution levels over the past two months.

According to the Central Pollution Control Board’s 4pm daily bulletin, on Wednesday, the AQI in both Noida and Greater Noida was 122.

This is only the second day this month when the air quality was in the “moderate” category. The AQI was last in that category on January 15 in both cities, data showed.

“The better air quality can only be attributed to improved wind speed and other meteorological conditions. We are keeping a strict vigil on pollution on the ground as well and all construction sites are taking precautions and sprinkling water regularly. In case of any violation, penalties are also being imposed,” said Praveen Kumar, regional officer, Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board (UPPCB), Noida.

With light rainfall predicted in parts of Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday evening, the pollution levels may drop further, say UPPCB officials. However, the rain may also lower the temperature in NCR cities just as winter nears its end.

UPPCB said there has only been a marginal improvement in the overall pollution levels in Noida over the past four years.But this year so far has not been very heartening, considering that the city saw just a couple of decent air quality days, officials said.

In 2019, there were no days in the entire month of January when the AQI touched ”moderate” or ”satisfactory” levels. In 2020, there was one day with ”moderate” air quality, which improved to two such days in 2021 and seven days in 2022. However, this year, there have just been two “ moderate” air quality days so far.

Noida also saw one day with ”severe” air quality this January, while Greater Noida had five such days this year, from January 6 to 10.

According to UPPCB regional officer for Greater Noida, Radhey Shyam, this increase was due to a sudden and steep increase in the number of vehicles arriving in Greater Noida during the week leading up to the Auto Expo which was held at the India expo mart from January 13 to 18.

Officials said one of the two monitoring stations in Greater Noida is located near the expo mart, the venue.

According to the air quality forecast by CPCB on Wednesday, the wind speed is likely to improve over the next couple of days from around 10-15km per hour to 12-20km per hour.

“The air quality is likely to remain in the “moderate” category till evening and enter “poor” category by night of January 25. The overall air quality is likely remain “poor to moderate”over the next six days. The predominant surface wind is likely to be coming from south-east while the sky would remain generally cloudy. Shallow to moderate fog may appear on January 26,” said the CPCB forecast.

The maximum temperature on Wednesday was around 21 degrees Celsius in Noida, while the minimum was around 12 degrees Celsius.

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