April 22, 2018

Delhi's 'very poor ' air quality likely to worsen

06 December 2017, 03:23 | Joan Schultz

Delhi's 'very poor ' air quality likely to worsen

Delhi-NCR woke up to a Chilly Morning Air quality remains'very-poor

The Air Quality Index (AQI), as recorded by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), also reflected the rise in the levels of these ultrafine air-borne particulates, which manage to lodge deep in the lungs and even enter the bloodstream.

"The India Meteorological Department (IMD) will do overnight monitoring of the pollution levels and inform EPCA in the morning", said Shambahvi Shukla, also a researcher at CSE and member of the EPCA. The Sri Lankan cricket team had complained of poor air quality that forced India to declare their innings. The bad air quality level affected many who have asthma or breathing problem.

Pollution is considered severe plus or emergency when readings of PM2.5 and PM10 cross 300 and 500 ug/m3 respectively.

At 7 p.m., the volume of major pollutant PM2.5 or particles with diameter less than 2.5 micrometers in Delhi was 254 units and in Delhi-NCR it was 261 units - 10 times the safe limit. It is classified as "very poor". The humidity levels oscillated between 39 and 94 per cent. AQI in neighbouring city of Vasundhara has also slipped into severe category with the PM 2.5 shooting up to 468.

Yesterday's 24-hour average was 351.

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While episodes like this are indeed worrying (with specific health and economic impacts) and deserve immediate and absolute attention, discussing air quality only during episodic conditions risks normalizing air pollution for the rest of the year.

An AQI between 0-50 is considered Good, 51-100 Satisfactory, 101-200 Moderate, 201-300 Poor, 301-400 Very Poor, and 401-500 Severe.

■ Chirag Nambiar - Student Knowing that our capital is over-polluted and not safe, exposing cricketers, especially global ones who may not be used to this level of pollution is nothing but a callous move by the authorities. The unfavorable meteorology and additional sources (e.g., increased solid fuel use for heating, or crop residue burning) lead to episodes of air pollution that are some of the worst observed anywhere in the world.

However, there are phases, when such spikes are seen even during December and January, mostly due to rapid drop in temperature and high moisture content, factors that trap particulates near the surface. Burning of waste banned.

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