The national capital’s air quality remained poor for the fourth consecutive day on Thursday, with an increase in wind speed raising hopes about improvement in the situation in the next few days.
The overall air quality index (AQI) recorded at 4 pm Thursday stood at 210, which falls under the ‘poor’ category, authorities said.
On Wednesday, Delhi’s AQI stood at 239, according to data by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).
An AQI between 0-50 is considered ‘good’, 51-100 ‘satisfactory’, 101-200 ‘moderate’, 201-300 ‘poor’, 301-400 ‘very poor’, and 401-500 ‘severe’.
On Thursday, Ghaziabad and Noida also recorded ‘moderate’ air quality levels at 200 and 198 respectively, the data showed.
A senior CPCB official said there would be an improvement in the air quality in the next few days as the wind speed improved.
“The wind speed increased due to development of a low-pressure area over the Bay of Bengal,” he said.
A slew of measures is being taken by the CPCB to fight pollution during the upcoming winter season when the air quality in Delhi is generally the worst.
The measures include deployment of 41 inspection team to monitor any violations that might lead to the increase of pollution.
However, recent satellite images from the NASA have shown that the farmers in Punjab and Haryana have started burning crop residue earlier this month.
The NASA, on its official website, stated that burning crop residue in Punjab and Haryana has increased significantly over the past 10 days in and near Amritsar, Ambala, Karnal, Sirsa and Hisar.
Burning of paddy straw every year during October and November and wheat straw during April in Punjab and Haryana are the major contributors of air pollution in Delhi-NCR, as the smoke travels towards the national capital.
In Delhi, it mixes with the fog and creates a toxic smoggy winter every year. PTI