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Opinion

‘Very poor’ label for Delhi air as IMD predicts foggy Diwali

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Delhi’s air remained in the ‘very poor’ category on Saturday morning despite an increase in pollution levels. According to data from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), the Air Quality Index (AQI) at 6:00 am on Saturday was 364. On Friday, the 24-hour average AQI was 339.

Pollution levels are expected to rise over the weekend and may improve after the passage of a western disturbance, prompting rains in parts of northern India after November 15, according to an official forecast.

The AQI was in the ‘severe’ zone for six days, starting on November 5. Delhi got less relief on Wednesday and Thursday, when the AQI improved to the ‘very poor’ category after the winds changed direction, blowing from the east.

READ ALSO | Delhi wakes up to ‘very poor’ quality air, likely to deteriorate later today

Kuldeep Srivastava, head of IMD’s regional weather forecast center, said the average wind speed on Friday was around 8 km / h, leading to an increase in pollution levels. He said that from the afternoon of Diwali, the wind speed will drop to almost 6 km / h.

“From the night of Diwali (Saturday), the air quality is likely to begin to deteriorate. However, as of Sunday night, the wind direction is expected to change back to this and there is a possibility of light rain. Pollution particles stick to moisture in the air and settle closer to the ground, worsening air quality, ”said Srivastava.

The IMD forecast said as of Monday that wind speeds are likely to improve, which could again improve air quality.

READ ALSO | ‘Bad air leading to a Covid-19 spike; I’ll breathe soon ‘: Arvind Kejriwal

Meanwhile, IMD has forecast a foggy Diwali morning and a cloudy day on Saturday. The minimum temperature is likely to be around 12 degrees Celsius, while the maximum temperature is predicted to be around 30 degrees Celsius.

On Friday, Delhi’s low temperature, recorded at the Safdarjung Observatory, which is considered the city’s official reading, was 12.3 degrees Celsius, one degree below normal. The maximum temperature was 29.7 degrees Celsius, one degree above normal.

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