Delhi's air quality on brink of turning severe: Authorities

Christopher Davidson
November 3, 2018

Diesel generators have already been banned and Badarpur Power Plant has been shut down since October 15, when the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) came into force.

The EPCA urged Delhiites on Wednesday to use public transport for the next 10 days when the air quality is likely to deteriorate further. Of the total vehicular pollution, 40 per cent to 45 percent comes from two-wheelers and another 30 to 35 percent from four-wheelers. However, with sharp rise in major pollutants and Delhi's PM2.5 at 247 and PM10 at 448 microgrammes per cubic meters, the quality turned severe as it crossed the 400 mark.

Advocate Wasim A Qadri, representing Delhi government, told the bench that such vehicles would not be allowed to ply on the roads here.

'We need urgent action from the Government to clean up our air so that my sons, and thousands of children like them, don't continue to suffer'. He said this would be a part of the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) for 102 cities, called non-attainment cities, that consistently flout air pollution norms.

Following the direction from the EPCA, the DPCC notified Delhi Development Authority, Navratna Central Public Sector, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, Delhi Transport Corporation, National Highway Authority of India, India Meteorological Department, New Delhi Municipal Council, South Delhi Municipal Council, East Delhi Municipal Council and Public Works Department to enforce these measures.

Delhi is once again inching towards the worst time of the year in terms of air pollution, as the region's air quality is getting increasingly toxic.

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From Thursday, there will be a halt of all construction activities involving excavation.

Mishra's proposal also stated that the authorities will have to ensure that there is no burning of industrial waste and biomass fuel. Find us on Facebook too!

The central government's System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR) advised people to avoid all outdoor physical activities and those with asthma to keep relief medication handy.

All but one monitoring stations in Delhi reported "very poor" air quality on Thursday. There are six AQI categories, namely Good, Satisfactory, Moderately polluted, Poor, Very Poor, and Severe. "The moisture intrusion over Delhi and surrounding regions due to the westerlies disturbances will increase with effect from November 4 to enhanced holding capacity of atmosphere resulting in increase in PM2.5 levels", the SAFAR website said.

She said the team of researchers used a literature review approach and reviewed analyses and studies that focused on the concentrations of pollutants in the air - like ozone, particulates and nitrogen dioxide - around the world in countries like China and India.

Four areas in Delhi recorded "severe" air quality while 29 areas recorded "very poor" air quality, according to the CPCB data. In the case of repeat violations, criminal proceedings against defaulters will be initiated.

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