Delhi's air quality continues to remain 'very poor', may improve slightly

Delhi's air quality remained in the very poor category on Thursday but may improve slightly in the coming days due to increased wind speed.

The system of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting (SAFAR) recorded an overall air quality index (AQI) of 351, which falls in the "very poor" category.

An AQI between 201 and 300 is considered poor, 301 and 400 very poor and 401 and 500 is severe.

In the national capital, Mundka recorded severe air quality while 24 areas reported very poor air quality. Eight areas recorded poor air quality, according to the CPCB.

The overall PM2.5 (fine particulate matter in the air with a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometres) level was recorded at 186 and the PM10 level at 346, it said.

In NCR, Ghaziabad recorded worst air quality in the severe category at an AQI of 404. Faridabad and Noida recorded very poor air quality while Gurgaon recorded poor air quality.

"It may improve a few notches tomorrow (Thursday) but will remain in the very poor category. Moderate surface wind speed is the only weather factor not allowing pollution to accumulate significantly and working positively to an extent. Rest of the weather conditions are unfavourable for the air quality," SAFAR said on Wednesday.

A Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) taskforce has identified 21 hotspots of high pollution levels in Delhi-NCR and directed the respective area municipal corporations to take "focussed actions".

The task force has also asked authorities to carry out the inspection in Loni Bhopura, in Ghaziabad, from where repeated complaints of violations of norms associated with pollution-causing activities have been received, according to minutes of a meeting of the task force held in Delhi on Tuesday.

The task force has identified 15 hotspots in Delhi, including Anand Vihar, Bawana, Dwarka-Sector 8, Jahangirpuri, Mundaka, Narela, Okhla Phase-2 and Rohini. Many of the hotspots are already experiencing severe pollution levels.

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