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Air quality to deteriorate further in Delhi

It noted the ventilation index is less than 6000 m2 per second and the average wind speed is less than 10 kmph, which is “unfavourable for pollution dispersion.”

SNS | New Delhi |

The air quality in Delhi is expected to remain ‘poor,’ but may deteriorate further from Sunday to Monday, continuing its run of ‘bad air’ days.

The air quality is expected to stay ‘bad’ for the next seven days, according to the forecast. Even though several stations are already reporting severe air quality, this is for the overall average.

An AQI of zero to 50 is deemed ‘good,’ 51 to 100 is considered satisfactory,’ 101 to 200 is considered moderate,’ 201 to 300 is considered ‘poor,’ and 301 to 400 is considered very poor.’ An AQI of 401 or above is considered severe.’

“The predominant surface wind is likely to be coming from northwest/west direction in Delhi with wind speed 10-18 kmph with mainly clear sky and heat wave conditions at a few places on Saturday,” the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), Pune – that runs the air quality early warning system for Delhi – said.

According to IANS, Delhi has seen a high pollution event in a moderate pollution season, with PM10 as the major pollutant, resulting in the AQI dropping to the’very poor’ level on that day.

In comparison to the preceding four years, the year 2022 has shown to be the worst. The number of ‘bad’ air quality days between January 1 and May 31 is at its highest level since 2018, according to data from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

In 2022, there was 63 per cent of days with a ‘bad’ AQI from January 1 to May 31, compared to 51 per cent in 2018, 39 per cent in 2019, 24 per cent in 2020, and 38 per cent in 2021.

At 3 p.m. on Saturday, the AQI in Anand Vihar, East Delhi, was 343, Ashok Vihar, North Delhi, was 209, Dwarka Sector 8, West Delhi, was 314, Mandir Marg, Central Delhi, was 171, IGI Airport, Southwest Delhi, was 228, and Siri Fort, South Delhi, was 169. (219).

Meanwhile, the IITM forecast for Sunday and Monday said: “The predominant surface wind is likely to be coming from west direction in Delhi with wind speed 15-20 kmph, partly cloudy sky, heat wave conditions at isolated places and strong surface winds (speed 20-30 kmph) during the day on Sunday while on Monday, the predominant surface wind is likely to be coming from northwest/west direction in Delhi with wind speed 15-20 kmph, mainly clear sky and strong surface winds (speed 20-30 kmph) during the day.”

It noted the ventilation index is less than 6000 m2 per second and the average wind speed is less than 10 kmph, which is “unfavourable for pollution dispersion.”

However, apart from the NCR, long-range carried dust will continue to have an influence on air quality across sections of Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Madhya Pradesh during the next two days.
(with inputs from IANS)