Cold wave, 'very poor' air quality to trouble Delhiites for next 2-3 days
NEW DELHI: This winter Delhiites are in for a double-trouble as an unnerving combo of cold wave and pollution is set to haunt the residents in the national capital in the coming days. While the India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a cold wave warning along with the forecast that night temperature in Delhi could further drop to around 4 degrees in the subsequent days, a news agency has reported that Delhi is likely to experience toxic air over the next two days.
The mercury dropped to 5.1 degrees Celsius in the early hours of Tuesday, making it the coldest December day since 2015. Officials said that the cold wave conditions may be witnessed only at isolated places in the city on December 20, 21 and 22.
According to IMD officials, the main reasons behind the unusual drop in Tuesday's minimum temperature was clear skies and strong cold winds blowing over Delhi due to heavy snowfall in parts of northwest India.
The Air Quality Index (AQI) value, according to Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), on Wednesday was recorded at 375, in the 'very poor' category. The air quality in the city is likely to deteriorate, as wind speed could slow down over the next two days. In the National Capital Region (NCR), Greater Noida at 373, Ghaziabad at 363, Faridabad at 326 and Noida at 323 also remained in the "very poor" zone.
However, Gurugram, which had been maintaining "moderate" level of air quality for some days, also slipped into the "poor" category with an AQI of 221. An AQI between 201 and 300 is considered 'poor', 301 and 400 "very poor" and 401 and 500 'severe'. As per CPCB data, the average concentrations of PM2.5 and PM10 in Delhi at 7 pm were 204 and 347 microgrammes per cubic metres, respectively.