Winter pollution decreases a little, but remains far from the safety threshold: Study | Delhi News

New Delhi: The National Capital Region, including Delhi, has seen only marginal improvement in air pollution this winter despite having one of the highest rainfalls on record.
According to a report by the Center for Science and Environment (CSE), pollution levels between October 2021 and February 2022 were extremely high and far from meeting safety standards. Sources other than thatch accounted for nearly 80% of seasonal average PM2.5 levels.
The report says that even with an average rainfall of 217mm, the average and maximum levels of PM2.5 in Delhi this winter were 172ug/m3 and 516ug/m3 against 189 and 542ug/m3 and 114mm of rainfall l previous winter.
Although on a declining trend, Delhi still had the highest number of days with “severe” air quality. “Delhi recorded 25 days with ‘severe’ air quality. It was followed by Ghaziabad recording 16 days. Noida, Faridabad and Gurgaon recorded 15, 13 and five days,” the report said, adding that Ghaziabad was the most polluted of the four main satellite cities.
“High pollution levels and smog episodes are evidence of systemic pollution that has continued due to inadequate infrastructure for pollution control in all sectors. This can only be tamed if action throughout the year becomes stricter and more uniform across all sectors and across the region,” says Anumita Roychowdhury, Executive Director of CSE. The report stated that the average PM2.5 from thatch burning was 28 ug /m3 per day, while the rest was “of non-stubble origin”.
According to the report, 30 out of 38 air quality monitoring stations in Delhi recorded a downward trend, but Lodhi Road and Rohini recorded the highest pollution peak. “Wazirpur was the only recognized hotspot that recorded deteriorating air quality. All other places on Delhi-NCR’s pollution hotspot list have seen a decline…compared to last winter,” he said. Bahadurgarh, with an average of 131 ug/m3, continues to be the least polluted hotspot, while Jahangirpuri, with an average of 252 ug/m3, was the dirtiest in Delhi.

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