Pollution increases in Delhi despite negligible stubble burning

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New Delhi, Nov 27 (IANS) Air quality has yet again dropped in the national capital and neighbouring areas on Tuesday, with more places suffering ‘severe’ pollution levels even as stubble burning is negligible.

Experts attribute the current pollution situation of Delhi to local sources, including vehicular emissions, dust and industrial pollution. There are over 14 major sources of pollution in Delhi.

Hazardous to health, official agencies continued cautioning people against physical exertion outdoors.

The Air Quality Index (AQI) across 34 regions in Delhi was 352 on Tuesday, against 336 on Monday, considered ‘very poor’, on a scale of 0 to 500. Meanwhile, the AQI across 11 regions in NCR, including Noida and Gurugram was 360, according to System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR).

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Noida and several places across Delhi — Chandni Chowk, Dhirpur, Anand Vihar, Burari, Ashok Vihar, Jahangirpur, Mundka, Narela, Nehru Nagar and Wazirpur — witnessed ‘severe’ air quality.

“The current pollution situation in Delhi is due to local multiple sources. Stubble burning has almost ceased,” said Shambhavi Shukla, senior research associate at Centre for Science and Environment (CSE).

According to a 2016 Indian Institute of Technology-Kanpur report, major sources of the fine polluting particle in Delhi comes from road dust (38 per cent), vehicles (20 per cent), domestic fuel burning (12 per cent) and industrial point sources (11 per cent).

Sources for gaseous pollution include Diesel Generator sets (6 per cent) and Aircraft emission (2 per cent). There are at least 14 sources of particle pollution in Delhi and 10 sources of gaseous pollution.

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According to weather analysts, Delhi is dependent on favourable winds to disperse the pollutants. Currently, the national capital is getting highly unfavourable indefinite and moist winds.

“Delhi is getting south-easterly winds, which have high moisture content. Due to this, pollutants get trapped. Apart from that, winds are changing direction and have low speed, which is supportive of pollution,” said Mahesh Palawat, Director, private weather agency Skymet.

According to SAFAR, air quality is likely to continue in the ‘very-poor’ category.

–IANS

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