An Indian worker makes fire-crackers for the upcoming Hindu festival Diwali at a factory on the outskirts of Ahmadabad India
29 October, 2018, 16:47
The CPCB has warned that wind may move northerly and north-westerly during Diwali that may lead to further deterioration in Delhi's air quality.
Air quality in Delhi and neighbouring areas deteriorated on Sunday, with most parts recording a "severe or severe-plus" level of pollution while the air in Faridabad in Haryana was 21 times more polluted than safety standards.
While the Air Quality Index (AQI) of Delhi was 366 on a scale of 0 to 500, considered "very-poor", the same was 415 in Ghaziabad and 403 in Gurugram - both signifying "severe".
A Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution Authority warned on Thursday that air pollution in the capital region is likely to peak from November 1 as toxic fumes from the burning of agricultural fields in the neighboring northern states of Haryana and Punjab could blow in because of a change in wind direction.
D Saha, former air quality chief at the CPCB, said meteorological factors like wind speed, solar direction and temperature are mostly responsible for increasing pollution levels in the city.
The task force also warned that at beginning of November the situation may get further deteriorated on account of localised emissions on festival? and regional contribution due to stubble burning.
Meanwhile, the pollution body recorded the PM2.5 (presence of particles in the air with a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometres) at 179.
The acceptable levels of PM10, the larger particulate matter, and PM 2.5, which measures the finer and more risky particulate matter, are 100µg/ m3 and 60µg/m3, respectively.
In a meeting with representatives from Environment Ministry, IMD, Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board, Haryana Pollution Control Board and Delhi Pollution Control Board Friday, the task force apprised the members on the levels of air pollution in Delhi-NCR showing an upward trend.
"This is owing to stagnation conditions forced by calm winds with low ventilation and moderate stubble injection", according to the SAFAR.
It has forecast even worse indices for Sunday - 359 (PM10) and 211 (PM2.5).
It also recommended people go for shorter walks instead of jogs, keeping windows closed, and wearing masks while stepping outside.
The Central Pollution Control Board and SAFAR on Saturday issued separate advisories.
The health advisory is specifically for people suffering from heart or lung disease, older adults and children to avoid prolonged or heavy exertion.
On Saturday, five areas recorded severe pollution levels.
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