Delhi's air quality oscillates between poor and very poor; brace for worse

No respite for Delhi-NCR as air quality remained between "poor" and "very poor" category on Monday as authorities warned of days of severe pollution ahead.

On Monday morning, The overall Air Quality Index (AQI) of Delhi was recorded at 292 by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), the System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research (SAFAR) reported an AQI of 318, which falls in the "very poor" category.

An AQI between 0 and 50 is considered "good", 51 and 100 "satisfactory", 101 and 200 "moderate", 201 and 300 "poor", 301 and 400 "very poor", and 401 and 500 "severe".

Place PM2.5 PM10
R K Puram 187 143
Anand Vihar 217 192
Dwarka 184 N/A
Gurgaon 325 265
Faridabad 107 N/A

The permissible range or PM2.5 is 60 as per national standards and 25 by international standards.

The slump in air quality is largely attributed to stubble-burning in neighbouring Punjab and Haryana and meteorological reasons such as low winds.

The PM2.5 (presence of particles in the air with a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometres) was recorded at 143.

The PM10 level (presence of particles in the air with a diameter of less than 10 micrometres) in Delhi stood at 269, according to the data from the SAFAR.

An official on Sunday said the air quality of Delhi might deteriorate to "severe" category in the coming days as the air becomes heavier and results in the formation of smog.

On Saturday, a haze had engulfed the national capital and the worst air quality of this season was recorded at 324.

The Supreme Court-appointed Environment Protection Control Authority (EPCA) on Friday had held a meeting with officials of the Punjab, Haryana and the Delhi governments to discuss the pollution situation in the national capital.

An EPCA member on Friday said they took stock of the situation and it was decided that special attention would be given to vulnerable hotspots where poor or very poor air quality was observed.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Friday had warned that Delhi would become a "gas chamber soon" as the Centre, the Punjab and the Haryana governments were doing "absolutely nothing" for farmers involved in stubble burning.

"V sad that Central, Punjab and Haryana Govts did absolutely nothing for the farmers. As a result, the farmers will suffer on one hand and Delhi will become a gas chamber soon (sic)," Kejriwal had tweeted.

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