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Delhi’s air quality improves further, but remains poor

The Air Quality Index came down to 226 on Thursday morning from 282 on Wednesday.

delhi Updated: Dec 07, 2017 15:43 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Delhi air pollution,Air quality index,Central Pollution Control Board
Civil defence voulunteers stand with placards at a traffic junction in New Delhi to raise awareness about the need to improve air quality in the national capital(AFP File Photo )

Delhi’s air quality improved further as sky cleared up, wind speed increased and humidity levels dropped on Thursday, but it continued to be “poor.”

The Air Quality Index-- a measure of the level of pollutants-- which was hovering in the ‘very poor’ category for almost two weeks, dropped to ‘poor’ on Wednesday.

The AQI dropped from 282, on a scale of 500, on Wednesday to 226 at 8am on Thursday, according to Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) data.

The air quality further improved by 3pm, recording an AQI of 196.

“Pollution is governed by meteorology. So, of course, the increased wind speed may have helped disperse the pollutants further,” said D Saha, head of the air quality laboratory at the CPCB.

“Meteorology and our ground level activities have taken care of air pollutants in Delhi NCR and surrounding areas. If it continues, we will have moderate AQI, for the first time since past three years (in December),” said Saha, while adding that they were expecting moderate AQI for next few days.

Though by and large the city got slight respite from toxic air, areas close to RK Puram, Punjabi Bagh, and Anand Vihar continued to grapple with very poor air quality, with RK Puram recording the worst AQI of 343.

Areas around Pusa Road had the best air on Thursday, with a moderate AQI of 119. Areas close to the Indira Gandhi International Airport, Lodhi Road, Shadipur, Burari Crossing, and Dilshad Gardens, also had similarly better air.

Experts had on Wednesday attributed this improvement to the sudden change in the weather. The wind speed picked up, the sky cleared up and the humidity level dropped.

These factors helped to flush out the pollutants which had been accumulating over the past few days.

The wind speed increased from around 8-10 kmph on Wednesday, to 12-14 kmph on Thursday, and humidity levels dropped from 70% to 60% during the span of a day. This may have helped clear up the air further.

First Published: Dec 07, 2017 11:22 IST