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Thick haze engulfs Delhi, air quality still 'severe'

Thick haze engulfs Delhi, air quality still severe

NEW DELHI: A thick haze engulfed the national capital on Tuesday as the air quality remained in the 'severe' category and authorities expressed concern that light rainfall in the city may worsen the pollution levels. The overall air quality index (AQI) was recorded at 403, which falls in the 'severe' category, according to data provided by the Central Pollution Control Board. An AQI between 0 and 50 is considered 'good', 51 and 100 'satisfactory', 101 and 200 'moderate', 201 and 300 'poor', 301 and 400 'very poor', and 401 and 500 'severe'.

Seventeen areas in Delhi recorded 'severe' air quality and it was 'very poor' in 14 areas, according to the data.

On Tuesday, the level of PM2.5 (particles in the air with a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometres) and PM10 (particles in the air with a diameter of fewer than 10 micrometres) in Delhi was recorded at 238 and 399 respectively.

The Centre-run System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting (SAFAR) said there is a prediction of a cloudy sky in the capital and that can sometimes bring sporadic showers.

"However, such isolated showers often aggravate air pollution post-event unless the spell is longer and wider. It introduces a lot of moisture in the air and makes it heavy to hold more particulate matters," a SAFAR report said.

The Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) on Monday warned that if the air quality in Delhi continues to deteriorate then it would impose a complete ban on the use of non-CNG private as well as commercial vehicles.

"In the scenario that the weather remains adverse and that the current situation of air quality remains in 'very poor' or 'severe' category, then there is no option but to direct for a complete stop on the use of private and commercial vehicles other than those plying on CNG so that pollution can be contained," EPCA Chairperson Bhure Lal had said in a letter.

The air quality in Delhi has been "severe" for the past two days. The city recorded its highest pollution level of the year a day after Diwali with

an AQI of 642.


Delhi-NCR witnesses light rain

NEW DELHI: Many parts of Delhi-NCR like Mayur Vihar Phase-3, Patparganj, Anand Vihar and patches of Noida witnessed light rains and drizzle on Tuesday. However, the intensity of the rains was so less that they failed to wash away the pollutants.

As per the current scenario, Western Disturbance is affecting the western parts of Himalayas and its induced Cyclonic Circulation is persisting over North Rajasthan and adjoining parts of South Punjab and Haryana. As per MeT department, this system won't allow setting up of dry northwesterly winds for the coming two days.

By November 15, the Western Disturbance will move eastwards, and a steady flow of dry and northwesterly winds would commence. This weather activity is expected to continue for two to three days at a stretch. During that time, some relief can be foreseen.

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