Worst smog in Nov hangs over Delhi, situation to improve in couple of days



A heavy smog, the worst in the month of November in many years, descended on Delhi thereby reducing visibility.

According to media reports, PM 2.5 pollutant levels crossed 700 micrograms per cubic metres in areas such as RK Puram, Punjabi Bagh and Anand Vihar at 7.30 am on November 3.

According to System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), PM 10 levels breached the 500 metre mark in Delhi. In the absence of breeze/wind to disperse pollutants, pollution remained close to the ground.

The National Air Quality Index stated air quality in Delhi was PM 2.5. In Gurugram, a thick haze gulped the city on November 3, with media reports saying it was smog. Haryana Pollution Control Board stated that concentration of PM 2.5 in the air has risen steadily over the past three days. The average reading on November 3 is 445.86 metre, attaching a tag of seriousness to the present situation. The air quality levels on November 4 will slightly improve with PM 10 to drop closer to 400.

It may be noted PM 2.5 pollutants can cause heart attacks, lung cancer and respiratory diseases. Their measurement is considered to be the best indicator of the level of health risks from air pollution.

As per the weather department, winds of 10kmph to 15kmph are likely by November 6 or 7, which is likely to improve the situation significantly.

It may be noted visibility in this month was poorer than in November 2012, when the city had the worst smog in recent years.

On November 2, following Deputy CM Manish Sisodia’s arrest to meet the victim’s family who ended his life on One Rank One Pension issue, Chief broke Arvind Kejriwal had to cancel a Cabinet meeting to discuss measures to control air pollution.

Favouring that schools be closed as children shouldn’t be exposed to these pollutants, scientists said, the high pollution levels were due to the impact of pollutants discharged on Diwali and crop burning going on in different states for weeks together now.