The air quality in Delhi remained poor Sunday with a drop in wind speed, even as authorities predicted further fall in the air quality index of the national capital in the coming days. The overall air quality index (AQI) recorded at 10 am Sunday was 201 which falls in the poor category, according to Centre-run System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR).
On Saturday, the AQI of the national capital stood at 300. According to the CPCB website, Anand Vihar recorded an AQI of 249, DTU registered 209, ITO recorded 199 and Jahangirpuri recorded an AQI of 302, which falls in the poor category.
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’. Delhi’s neighbouring regions of Faridabad and Gurgaon both recorded poor air quality.
The PM10 level (presence of particles with diameter less than 10 micrometres) in Delhi stood at 180 and the PM2.5 level was recorded at 91, according to the data.
Authorities have predicted further deterioration of air quality in the coming days. A slew of measures are being taken by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to fight pollution during the upcoming winter season, when the air quality in Delhi is generally the worst.
Meanwhile, recent satellite images from NASA show that farmers in Punjab and Haryana started burning crop residue earlier this month.
NASA, on its official website, stated that burning crop residue in Punjab and Haryana has increased significantly over the past 10 days in and near Amritsar, Ambala, Karnal, Sirsa and Hisar.
Burning of paddy straw every year during October and November, and wheat straw during April in Punjab and Haryana are the major contributors of air pollution in Delhi-NCR, as the smoke travels towards the national capital.
In Delhi, it mixes with fog and creates a toxic smoggy winter every year. An emergency action plan will be implemented from Monday to combat air pollution that includes restrictions based on the air quality of the city, the CPCB said.