At 6.9°C, Delhi feels the chill as November cold breaks records
On Sunday, the Safdarjung observatory, which is the official marker for the city, recorded a minimum temperature of 6.9 degrees Celsius, 4 degrees below normal. At Lodhi Road, the minimum temperature went down further --- to record 6.4 degrees Celsius --- while the minimum temperature at the Aaya Nagar observatory was 6.8 degrees Celsius.Updated: Nov 22, 2020, 12:30 IST
Delhi on Sunday recorded a minimum temperature of 6.9 degrees Celsius, breaking the previous November record of 7.3 degrees Celsius witnessed in 2006, India Meteorological Department (IMD) recordings showed.
On Sunday, the Safdarjung observatory, which is the official marker for the city, recorded a minimum temperature of 6.9 degrees Celsius, 4 degrees below normal. At Lodhi Road, the minimum temperature went down further --- to record 6.4 degrees Celsius --- while the minimum temperature at the Aaya Nagar observatory was 6.8 degrees Celsius.
IMD data shows that Delhi recorded 7.3 degrees Celsius on November 28, 2006. It was the previous record for the lowest minimum temperature since IMD began maintaining data from 1990. The lowest ever minimum temperature was recorded on November 28, 1938, when the minimum temperature dipped to as low as 3.9 degrees Celsius.
IMD scientists have warned that this time the Capital is likely to have a colder winter than usual this year, because of a Pacific Ocean weather phenomenon known as La Nina, which leads to a cascading impact on global weather in winter months.
During La Nina, temperatures in central Pacific Ocean drops below normal levels, triggering wind patterns that can influence weather in faraway regions. This has been linked to colder than usual winters in northwest India.
“Both maximum and minimum temperatures are likely to remain around 2-2.5°C below normal this entire season. Also, since winter is setting in early with temperatures already low, the minimum is likely to fall to 5-6°C as early as December 10. This usually happens after December 20,” said Kuldeep Srivastava, head of IMD’s regional weather forecasting centre (RWFC).
He added that day temperatures, or the maximum temperature, will begin falling in early December.
Local factors, too, have contributed to making days colder. Delhi has had a cloudless streak, with only one western disturbance so far bringing in moisture. “When there are no clouds, the ground cools faster and the minimum temperatures stay low,” Srivastava explained.
On Friday, Delhi recorded a minimum temperature of 7.5°C, five notches below normal and the lowest November temperature in 14 years. On Saturday, it rose slightly to settle at 8.5°C, while the maximum was at 24.6°C.
Experts said a western disturbance on November 23 will briefly cause a slight increase in temperatures. Once that passes, days and nights will become colder again.
“When global conditions like La Nina are prevailing, there is a tendency for regions under northwest India to get colder,” said VK Soni of IMD’s environment monitoring research centre.
Soni added that at present, the dip in mercury is accompanied by strong winds that helps in blowing away pollutants but after November 23, wind speed is likely to reduce and trigger a deterioration in air quality.