CPCB asks people to avoid jogging, running outdoors between 1-10 November to tackle deteriorating air quality in Delhi
An expert panel, constituted under the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP), headed by the Member Secretary of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), has recommended stringent measures, including minimisation of private vehicles and shutdown of coal and biomass industries, between 1 and 10 November, citing a dip in air quality.
Taking into account the drop in air quality in the Delhi-NCR region, an expert panel headed by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), has advised residents to avoid strenuous outdoor activities like jogging or running, as well as cutting down the use of private cars, among other stringent measures, between 1 and 10 November.
The CPCB task force's statement comes after air quality in the city on Friday recorded the worst on the pollution index this season, gradually inching towards the 'severe' category, with experts cautioning that the quality in Delhi-NCR might worsen from next month as the wind is likely to come from the northwest direction.
The CPCB recorded the overall Air Quality Index of Delhi at 361 Friday evening, which falls in the 'very poor' category, but not very far from the 'severe' category. An AQI between 0 and 50 is considered 'good', 51 and 100 'satisfactory', 101 and 200 'moderate', 201 and 300 'poor', 301 and 400 'very poor', and 401 and 500 'severe'.
Here is a rundown of some of the other recommendations that CPCB made, which people living in the Delhi-NCR region should follow:
— Minimize exposure to the toxic air by avoiding strenuous outdoor exercises like jogging or running, and cutting down the use of private cars.
— All construction activities, involving excavation, civil construction, stone crushers and hot mix plants, should be halted in the designated time.
— Coal and biomass-based industries (excluding thermal and waste to energy plants) should be shut from 4 to 10 November.
— Wet sweeping should be practised inside homes to avoid any dust being kicked up.
— Avoid use of incense sticks.
— Transport departments should check visibly polluting vehicles and control traffic congestion.
The task force also recommended efforts to provide uninterrupted power supply in NCR towns to avoid the requirement of operating diesel generator (DG) sets.
In a meeting with representatives from the Environment Ministry, IMD, Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board, Haryana Pollution Control Board and Delhi Pollution Control Board on Friday, the CPCB task force appraised the members on levels of air pollution in Delhi NCR showing an upward trend.
Siddharth Singh, a representative from the India Meteorological Department (IMD), said Delhi's air quality which has deteriorated to very poor level would continue to remain in the same condition for the next few days.
It was also informed that at the beginning of November, the situation may get further deteriorated on account of localised emissions during Diwali, and during regional contribution due to stubble burning, Singh was quoted as saying in the minutes of the meeting.
The pollution level in the national capital has deteriorated to alarming levels in the last two weeks. The reason behind the deterioration has been attributed to localised factors as well as stubble burning from the neighbouring states of Punjab and Haryana.
With inputs from PTI
It has been decided by the Haryana government to reduce the VAT rates on air turbine fuel from 20 percent to 1 percent, an official statement said
Three days of incessant rains have left a trail of death and devastation in the state killing 52 people, damaging roads, bridges and railway tracks besides destroying standing crop.
What is worrisome is climate change is a reality of life, and the excessive, erratic downpour is becoming a routine phenomenon in Uttarakhand