Speed of local surface winds likely to pick up on Monday and Tuesday: SAFAR

Toxic air: Traffic moving on NH-9 on a smoggy Saturday morning in Delhi. R. V. MOORTHY  

Speed of local surface winds likely to pick up on Monday and Tuesday: SAFAR

The air quality of the city continued to be in the ‘severe’ category for the second consecutive day on Saturday and is expected to remain the same on Sunday, according to authorities.

Speed of local surface winds is likely to pick up slightly on Monday and Tuesday, resulting in slight improvement of air quality to the ‘very poor’ level, according to Centre-run monitoring agency SAFAR (System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research).

Funds for workers

The city Government in an official statement said it will deposit ₹5,000 each into the accounts of 7 lakh construction workers of Delhi. The money has already been sent to 2,95,000 accounts on Saturday and the others will also receive the amount in the next two days, the statement said.

On Saturday, the contribution of stubble burning in neighbouring States to PM2.5 — a chief pollutant — to Delhi’s pollution was low, according to SAFAR.

The current spike in air pollution is chiefly due to a drop in wind speed and a fall in the height up to which pollutants can be distributed in the atmosphere.

‘Severe’ air pollution levels affect “healthy people” and “seriously impacts” those with existing diseases, as per the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

The Air Quality Index of Delhi was 402 on Saturday, slightly down from 406 on Friday, as per the CPCB’s 4 p.m. bulletin, which is the average of the past 24 hours. An AQI between 301 and 400 is ‘very poor’ and 401 and 500 is ‘severe’.

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