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Four days after Diwali, pollution still high in Ghaziabad

Even four days after Diwali, the AQI for Ghaziabad stood at 395 micrograms per cubic metre (mpcm) and at 323 mpcm for Noida.

noida Updated: Oct 23, 2017 23:24 IST
Peeyush Khandelwal
Peeyush Khandelwal
Hindustan Times
Pollution,AQI,Diwali pollution
Smog clouded the Ghaziabad skyline even four days after Diwali as PM10 and PM2.5 levels continue to be high.(Sakib Ali/HT Photo)

Since Diwali last Thursday, the Central Pollution Control Board’s air quality index (AQI) for Ghaziabad and Noida have remained in ‘severe’ or ‘very poor’ categories.

Even four days after Diwali, the AQI for Ghaziabad stood at 395 micrograms per cubic metre (mpcm) and at 323 mpcm for Noida.

Although both readings are high, the data show that the pollution levels are on the decline. For the three days of October 20-22, the AQI for Ghaziabad has stood at 412, 454 and 381 mpcm, respectively.

The residents’ associations have also fixed a meeting with the regional pollution control board officials on Tuesday and have suggested several measures to tackle pollution.

“Even on days other than Diwali, the air pollution level is high. We have proposed more online monitoring stations in areas where there is a high movement of vehicles. There are two stations at Vasundhara and Model Town where there is less movement of vehicles. We have also suggested the concept of vertical gardening on road pillars and flyovers. The plants will help absorb pollution,” said Colonel TP Tyagi (retired), president of flat owners’ federation.

After Diwali in 2016, the particulate matter (PM) 10 level in Ghaziabad rose to dangerously high levels and touched at 910 mpcm at the Vasundhara monitoring station. Post Diwali this year, the PM10 level was 632 mpcm at the same station.

Ajay Sharma, the regional manager from UP pollution control board (UPPCB) in Ghaziabad, could not be reached for comment despite repeated attempts.

However, BB Awasthi, UPPCB’s regional officer in Noida, said the situation is improving by the day and as per System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR) forecast, issued on Monday, the situation will improve further this week.

“I am quite hopeful that the air quality in Noida will improve from ‘very poor’ to ‘poor’. We will be content if the quality does not deteriorate further,” he said.

In Noida, the SAFAR data for October 20, a day after Diwali, showed PM10 level at 438 mpcm and PM 2.5 level at 448 mpcm. The standard limit for PM10 is 100 mpcm while it is 60 mpcm for PM2.5.

First Published: Oct 23, 2017 23:24 IST