AQI touches 'very poor' category, to deteriorate further in absence of rain
NEW DELHI: The overall air quality in the national Capital slipped into the "very poor" category on Thursday as expected. According to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR), the air quality index (AQI) was recorded at 319 on Thursday morning. The deterioration of air quality is a typical pre-shower winter impact.
The wind speed has also reduced to 3.6 kmph which is unfavourable for dispersion of prominent pollutants. SAFAR predicted that rain may occur due to westerly disturbances related to moisture saturation. Light shower may improve the AQI to 'moderate' range after which the AQI would fluctuate between 'moderate' and 'poor' categories for a couple of days. However, if there is no rain, which is more probable, the AQI would increase in magnitude to touch the upper end of the 'very poor' category.
The overall PM2.5 (fine particulate matter in the air with a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometre) level in Delhi was recorded at 145 in the "very poor" category while the PM10 (fine particulate matter in the air with a diameter of fewer than 10 micrometre) level was recorded at 251 in the 'poor' category on Thursday. India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted that in Delhi, the minimum temperature would hover around eight degree Celsius while the maximum temperature is likely to be 21 degree Celsius. IMD predicted thunderstorm with hail in the city. As many as 10 trains to Delhi were delayed due to fog and low visibility. Meanwhile, officials noted that there has been a prolonged spell of Cold Wave conditions this time in Delhi with the lowest minimum in January recorded at 4°C January 1 this year. More than half of the month of January has been hovering on a low single digit number somewhere between 4°C-6°C. The monthly average temperature for January is 7.6°C and as on January 31, the average minimum temperature for Delhi is at 6.9°C which is 0.7°C below the normal and it is quite phenomenal.