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Delhi records record-high air pollution

November saw record levels of air pollution in Delhi, India. 

The daily average particulate matter (PM2.5) measurement was 410.5ug/m3, according to data analysed by Air Quality News from the Real-Time Air Quality Index in Pusa, Delhi.

Anything over 300ug/m3 is considered hazardous, meaning everyone may experience more serious health effects

Experts have attributed these record pollution levels to the shifting of the stubble burning period by around a week due to a prolonged monsoon season and the use of fireworks during Diwali. 

As a result of the air pollution, schools and colleges closed for over a week, government offices were asked to operate from home and private businesses were advised to work-from-home as much as possible.

yellow bus on road during daytime

The government also banned the use of diesel trucks for non-essential goods and shut down five coal power stations on Delhi’s outskirts.

The Delhi government also hired an extra 700 CNG buses to encourage people to use public transport. And a ban on construction has been reimposed to curb dust, a major source of pollution.

Dipankar Saha, former head of the CPCB’s air laboratory told Outlook India: ‘The emission sources for any defined area more or less remain the same throughout the year.

‘However, the concentration varies with the season. November being the transition phase, the air quality in northern India is always problematic because of lowering of the atmospheric boundary layer, wind speed, temperature and local action plan’s implementation.’

 

 

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