As temperatures dropped in the city and suburbs, the air quality here deteriorated further on Tuesday. The air quality index (AQI) — the pollutant-measuring indicator — was at 218 (poor), the highest since March. The worst AQI this year was recorded on March 17, at 272.
The System of Air Quality Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR) categorises AQI levels for particulate matter (PM2.5) in the 0-50 range as good; 51-100 as satisfactory; 101-200 as moderate; 201-300 as poor; 301-400 as very poor and above 400 as severe. An AQI of 201 (poor) has been predicted for Wednesday.
Hazy conditions and a thin layer of smog was also witnessed across the city’s skyline. The most polluted area in the city was Mazgaon, as it recorded “very poor” AQI at 311, followed by Malad, at 307; Chembur at 303; Navi Mumbai at 225 (poor) and Colaba at 139. The concentration for PM10 (larger coarser particles) was 155 microgram per cubic metre, against the safe limit of 100 microgram per cubic metre for 24 hours.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted a clear sky for the next three days and the minimum and maximum temperatures are expected to be 23 and 35 degrees Celsius, respectively.
Researchers said that the increase in air pollution can be attributed to the minimum temperature dropping below the normal mark in Mumbai during the early hours of the day.
The minimum temperature at Santacruz observatory on Tuesday was 23.2 degrees Celsius, which is 0.8 degrees above normal, while it was 25.5 degrees Celsius at Colaba station, which is 1.5 degrees above normal.
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