Air quality in the capital remained in the ‘poor’ range — AQI of 246 — on Monday but it is expected to deteriorate to the ‘very poor’ category on Wednesday and Thursday.
According to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), while surface winds in the city are presently favourable for dispersion of pollutants, calm conditions are expected on Wednesday and Thursday.
“The overall AQI in Delhi has marginally improved and is in the ‘poor’ category… owing to slight increase in surface winds. Air quality is expected to stay in the ‘poor’ category for Tuesday. A change in surface wind direction is forecast, which is likely to bring calm surface wind conditions, leading to deterioration of AQI. ‘Very poor’ AQI is forecast on Wednesday and Thursday,” an official said.
On Monday, with the surface wind speed increasing, the contribution of stubble burning to PM 2.5 in the city was reduced to 10 per cent.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, meanwhile, appealed to the Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar to hold a monthly meeting of chief ministers of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi to tackle the problem of farm fires in the region.
“Till now, the Central government is convening meetings with the environment ministers of the states of north India. I want to request the Union Environment Minister to call a meeting of the chief ministers of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana and Delhi every month because this is a big issue and it can’t be managed only at the level of the environment ministers of these states. We all should meet with an open mind and discuss the problem to find a solution… The environment ministers, senior officials and the experts from these states should also be present in these monthly meetings. We should continue these monthly meetings till the time we find a solution to stop stubble burning,” Kejriwal said during a virtual address on Monday.
He listed out innovations for more effective disposal of paddy stubble, such as the PUSA Decomposer, which is being sprayed in Delhi this year; the factory in Karnal where stubble is converted into compressed bio-gas; and factories which are making coal and coke from the residue.
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