Delhi's air quality fell to ‘poor’ category for the second day on Saturday due to change in the wind direction, authorities said on Saturday. The poor quality air is likely to affect the health of people living in and arouind the national capital.
At 10 am on Saturday, Delhi’s overall air quality index (AQI) showed 245 which is the poor category, according Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) data. Ghaziabad and Gurgaon recorded 'very poor' air quality at 302 and 336 respectively.
On Friday, Delhi’s AQI was registered at 259.
The weatherman had predicted that a dust storm will hit the national capital which would worsen the air quality, but there are no indications of a big storm yet.
Authorities are closely monitoring the situation, a senior official at the Supreme Court mandated body Environment Pollution Control Authority said.
A CPCB official explained that the drop in the air quality is due to change in direction of wind, which is now flowing from areas in Haryana and Punjab where stubble burning is taking place.
"This is the period of monsoon withdrawals and a low-pressure system in the Arabian Sea is developing. Such large-scale processes tend to calm the wind speed which is usual for this time… This tends to increase pollution level. The impact of local transport is insignificant so far," Project Director at the Centre-run System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), Gufran Beig, said.
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.
Delhi registered 208 PM10 level (presence of particles with diameter less than 10mm) and the PM2.5 level (presence of particles with diameter less than 2.5 mm) in the city was 104, according to SAFAR data.