Cold Christmas in Delhi with 'severe' air quality

Pablo Tucker
December 27, 2018

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal hinted on Tuesday that the state government is willing to re-introduce the odd-even auto rationing scheme if needed.

The city's air quality remained in the "severe" category for the third consecutive day on Monday as the wind speed and other meteorological factors remained "highly unfavourable" for dispersion of pollutants. The air quality is likely to remain in the "severe" category for the next couple of days due to unfavourable meteorological conditions. "Approval of new sections of the Delhi Metro has also been delayed for four years and was done only under pressure from the Centre and the BJP Opposition", Mr. Gupta claimed. "It is not as if the level of emissions has suddenly gone up", he said. Faridabad and Ghaziabad also recorded "severe" air quality, data showed. However, System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR), recorded the overall AQI at 477.

Mr. Tiwari alleged that Mr. Kejriwal had made many poll promises to control pollution, including mechanical cleaning of roads, sprinkling of water, tree plantation, banning construction work and installing air purifiers, but the Delhi government had "failed" at fulfilling "any of them".

The overall PM2.5 level - fine particulate matter in the air with a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometer - was recorded at 407 and the PM10 level at 581, the CPCB said.

He asked all the stakeholder departments and agencies to remain prepared to take mandated actions under the "very poor" and the "severe/ severe plus" categories of air quality index in Delhi.

On Sunday, 30 areas of the national capital recorded "severe" air quality while it was "very poor" in six, the CPCB said.

During October and November, the federal government had blamed neighbouring states for failing to curb the burning of stubble in fields, but Delhi's air worsened in December, data showed.

Vertical mixing in the room that is available for pollutants to disperse.

Even as air pollution level was creating "emergency-like conditions" in the Capital, Mr. Kejriwal was yet to "understand the seriousness" of it, said the BJP.

In its forecast for the next few days, SAFAR said that surface wind speed is expected to increased from existing 2.3 kmph to 5 kmph.

"The ventilation index which allows dispersion (of pollutants) is extremely poor and it is expected that these conditions will prevail for the next two days", Lal said in the letter.

High levels of pollution can affect even healthy citizens and the multi-agency task force headed by the Central Pollution Control Board has advised people with respiratory illness to stay indoors. "Until the centre takes steps, nothing can not be done", Kejriwal said.

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