Smog during the winter in Delhi-NCR is a curse for people, especially for those who want to fly-in or fly-out of the national capital. Train and flight services get hit severely by this. Flights getting delayed or cancelled are common affairs during this period. Now in a move which may come as a respite for flyers, scientists at the Pune-based Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) were helping the Delhi airport authority. The scientists have predicted visibility levels at least a day in advance, according to Indian Express report. Currently, the airport receives visibility information in advance of four-five hours. The information sharing started on an experimental basis on November 30. The new model has been developed by Winter Fog Experiment (WIFEX) project. So far, the predictions have matched with the observed data, Sachin Ghude, one of the researchers, said. A weather forecaster at the Delhi airport has said they were in the process of “evaluating IITM’s improved model” of fog forecasting.
The National Green Tribunal yesterday came down heavily on the Delhi government for not filing a comprehensive action plan on ways to deal with severe air pollution in the city and slammed authorities for holding the India-Sri Lanka cricket match despite bad air quality. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar took exception over the failure of the AAP government to file the report despite its specific order. During the hearing, the Delhi government said it needed more time to file the action plan as the chief secretary and environment secretary have been recently changed.
Delhi has the right to breathe clean air but neither the Centre nor the Delhi government was “doing enough” to promote that right, senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor yesterday claimed, as he launched a white paper on air pollution in the capital. Tharoor, also a Lok Sabha member, cited the instance of the choking smog disrupting the third Test between Sri Lanka and India, saying it showed the severity of the pollution situation in the city. “Delhi has the right to breathe (clean air). But, neither the Centre nor the Delhi government is doing enough right now to promote that right for people,” he told reporters. The “White Paper on Air Pollution in Delhi” has been prepared by the Delhi chapter of All India Professionals’ Congress (AIPC), which is headed by Tharoor.