Respite for New Delhi as higher wind speed flushes out pollution

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on November 05, 2019

Delhi’s air quality has improved slightly, says SAFAR   -  PTI

After suffering from heavy pollution over last week, things are looking up for Delhi National Capital Region, if the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR) prediction is anything to go by.

SAFAR in its Tuesday morning update stated that the Air Quality Index is back to 'very poor,' as opposed to 'severe,' as predicted after largely due to faster boundary layer winds at 40 kilometres per hour (kmph), acting to flush out pollution. On Monday, the wind speed was 26 kmph.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a meeting today to discuss the situation arising due to pollution in various part of Northern India. He also reviewed the situation arising due to cyclone conditions in parts of western India.

On Monday, satellite images had observed biomass fire counts or incidences of stubble burning peaking at 4,962 along with north westerly winds that usher in pollution from Haryana and Punjab into Delhi. SAFAR stated that in spite of this Delhi air quality was least affected and continued to recover.

"It was mainly due to high transport-level wind speed which rapidly passed over Delhi without descending to only impact the farther region and then getting dissipated having short residence time. An illustrative example that how the combination of several factors like external transport, local emission, and boundary layer dynamics has to act together to have a powerful impact," SAFAR said in a statement.

SAFAR further said that high surface and boundary layer wind are forecast for Tuesday, and this will improve air quality drastically during the sunny day hours.

However, slight deterioration of air quality is expected during late-night hours and early hours of Wednesday, due to reduced wind speed.  Reduced stubble burning and scattered rainfall is expected to further improve Delhi air quality by November 8, SAFAR said.

In the morning hours on Tuesday, the US Embassy was recording air quality index of 305, a slight improvement from a day before's 336. While in most places in Delhi, AQI was beneath 300, in Greater Noida it peaked at 348, while in Gurugram it stood at 307.

Published on November 05, 2019

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