Air Quality drops in National Capital, no improvement likely

New Delhi: The air quality of the national capital fell further, as temperature dropped and experts saw no improvement before Diwali, after which it may further deteriorate.

The Air Quality Index (AQI) on Thursday was 331 against 328 on Wednesday, on a scale of 0 to 500, marked very-poor.

Many areas choked with ‘severe’ air-quality category, as both PM2.5 and PM10, or particles with diameter less than 2.5 and 10mm, intensified across the National Capital Region.

The particle pollutant remained about five times above the safe limits with air-quality severe or severe-plus at Mundaka, Dwarka, Anand Vihar, Bawana, Mathura Raod, Jahangirpuri, R K Puram, Rohini and Wazirpur.

Experts suggest that the current poor air-quality is attributed to the local source of pollutants and meteorological reasons.

According to weather analysts, low winds over Delhi are saving the national capital from ill-effects of stubble burning in the neighbouring state.

“The pollution levels are expected to remain high in Delhi, because of calm winds, lower temperature and slight high humidity. The local pollutant will not be dispersed,” said Mahesh Palawat, director private weather forecasting agency Skymet.

He said pollution levels of Delhi and NCR are expected to remain high till at least first week of November, after which Diwali will show its effect.

On Thursday, the average PM2.5 or particles with diameter less than 2.5mm, in Delhi was 167 units across 36 regions and 164 units across 48 regions of NCR.

The permissible limit of PM2.5, the major pollutant, is 60 units as per national standards.

Meanwhile, the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR) issued advisory to avoid strenuous outdoor physical activity early morning and after sunset.