Delhi's air quality turns "severe", hazy conditions to prevail

17 June, 2018, 19:07 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • Delhi reels under ‘severe’ air quality construction on hold till Sunday

While the pollution in winters is mainly attributed to stubble burning and lack of wind, the dust storm due to high wind speeds seems to have caused severe air pollution in the national capital region (NCR) around this time of the year. As per CPCB, the PM10 (particles with diameter less than 10 mm) level was beyond "severe - at 778 - in Delhi-NCR, and 824 in Delhi in particular, leading to hazy conditions and limiting visibility". NDTV delivers reliable information across all platforms: TV, Internet and Mobile. Online air quality monitors of Delhi Pollution Control Committee in Delhi show huge escalation of particulate levels. The Environment Ministry has warned the public that air quality may remain poor for the next 2-3 days. The EPCA and the Lt Governor in Delhi have asked for the immediate implementation of the severe plus action under the Graded Response Action Plan.

A study by the World Health Organisation says that out of an estimated seven million deaths a year from air pollution, more than 90 per cent happen in low and middle income group countries such as Africa and Asia. Anti-cyclonic winds from Rajasthan were said to be the reason behind Delhi's air quality decline.

Government officials also mentioned that to measure pollutant levels or aerosol loads in Delhi region, the norms or prescribed standards of World Health Organisation (WHO) can not be considered in highly populated region like Delhi.

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The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted a cloudy day in the national capital with the possibility of thundershowers. The Environment Ministry too has requested the Delhi chief secretary to issue instructions to the agencies concerned.

Authorities in the Indian capital suspended all construction on Friday and sent out more water trucks to spray the streets in the hope of improving the quality of the city's air befouled by days of dust storms. 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.

According to the U.S. Embassy's real-time air quality index, the air quality was so poor in some parts of Delhi on Wednesday that it was beyond the maximum level.

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