Last Updated: November 18, 2023, 08:19 IST
The air quality in the national capital continued to remain in ‘severe’ category as the city recorded an air quality index (AQI) of 405 on Friday, which was only marginally less than the 419 recorded on Thursday. The Air Quality Early Warning System for Delhi indicated that the air quality is likely to remain ‘very poor’ between November 18- 20.
No Improvement Despite GRAP
The first stage of the Graded Response Action Plan (Grap) was enforced in the national capital on October 6 in view of the alarming levels of air pollution. As the air quality continued to worsen, the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) invoked the fourth and final stage of Grap on November 5, which included a ban on diesel-run light commercial vehicles (LCVs) registered outside Delhi and those not conforming to BS6 emission norms from entering the city with immediate effect.
However, these measures did little to improve the air quality as the national capital has already recorded nine ‘severe’ air days in November, which is three times the number compared to last year.
According to the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology’s Decision Support System, the contribution of stubble burning to PM 2.5 levels was estimated to be low on Friday, likely to be only around 3.45%, which is less than the 5.85% contribution of stubble burning to PM 2.5 levels on Thursday, an Indian Express report mentioned.
Open Waste Burning
According to a Hindustan Times report, despite clear instructions to ensure strict prohibition on waste burning under GRAP, open waste was being burnt near the Anand Vihar ISBT on Friday. One of Delhi’s 13 identified pollution hot spots, Anand Vihar had an average AQI of 406 (severe) at 4:00 pm on Friday.
Meanwhile, Mumbaikars heaved a sigh of relief as the AQI in the city showed an improvement. According to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), the AQI in Mumbai was recorded at 140, while the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR) reported it as 136.
Three locations in the city, however, recorded air quality in the poor category –
- Kalanagar in BKC at 225 (SAFAR)
- BKC at 227 (CPCB)
- Sewri at 208 (Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s monitors)
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, 401 and 450 severe and above 450 severe plus.