Air quality worsens in Delhi, five areas clock ‘very poor’
The main factors that influence Delhi’s air quality are wind speed and direction. Typically in winter, the wind speed is down making air quality fouler.delhi Updated: Oct 11, 2017 23:23 IST
Delhi’s air got worse on Wednesday with six monitoring stations in the city clocking an Air Quality Index (AQI) above 300, which is “very poor”.
The monitoring stations at Anand Vihar, DTU, Delhi University North Campus, Punjabi Bagh, Shadipur and NSIT Dwarka all had an AQI of more than 300 on Wednesday.
Anand Vihar, arguably the most polluted spot in the city, topped the list with 379. Most other stations had “poor” air quality, which is AQI between 200 and 300.
“Over the past four-five days, levels of particulate matter – PM10 and PM2.5 – have shot up drastically. The air quality is likely to deteriorate further in the next two-three days and this is primarily because of meteorological conditions,” Dipankar Saha, who heads the air quality laboratory of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), said.
Saha said because of a depression in the South and South East of the country, wind speed has decreased substantially in and around Delhi.
The main factors that influence Delhi’s air quality are wind speed and direction. Typically in winter, the wind speed is down making air quality fouler.
“We can see a problem of dust in the Indo-Gangetic plains, which is a typical feature for the onset of winter. There is intrusion of moisture from east and south-east, which will increase humidity, pressure and pollutants. Night hours are experiencing calm wind pattern. The result will be increase in pollution,” Saha said.
The air quality index (AQI) maintained by the CBCB was below 200 till Friday when the FIFA U-17 World Cup began but it shot up to 252 on Tuesday and touched 268 on Wednesday.
An AQI score between 200-300 is classified as “poor” as per CPCB standards, and it may cause “breathing discomfort to people on prolonged exposure, and discomfort to people with heart disease.”
Air quality in Delhi starts deteriorating from October due to a rapid fall in temperature and burning of paddy straw in neighbouring Punjab and Haryana.
The city of about 20 million people has been struggling to clean up its air that contains a toxic cocktail of dust, smoke and gases from vehicle and factory exhausts.