Delhi Air Quality Index: City’s AQI reaches poor category; GRAP sub-committee urges for swift dust control measures

After the Air Quality Index (AQI) in Delhi reached poor category on Wednesday, the GRAP sub-committee reviewed the air quality and directed the relevant authorities to urgently implement dust abatement measures and monitor them.

Delhi’s overall Air Quality Index (AQI) clocked 243 (‘Poor’ category) on date, as per the Daily AQI Bulletin from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

“Delhi’s overall Air Quality Index (AQI) clocked 243 (‘Poor’ category) on date, as per the Daily AQI Bulletin from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). Taking note of the increase in the average air quality of Delhi-NCR over past few days, the Sub-Committee for invoking actions under the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) of the Commission for Air Quality Management in

NCR & Adjoining Areas (CAQM) accordingly met today to take stock of the current air quality scenario of Delhi-NCR and also assess technical as well as expert inputs related to forecasts for overall air quality of Delhi-NCR put forward by IITM/IMD,” the Ministry of Environment said in a press release.

“While reviewing the air quality scenario in the region, it was informed that the wind direction and speeds are rapidly changing due to high convection rates and absolute dry conditions coupled with high temperatures leading to continued suspension of dust over the National Capital Region (NCR),” as per the release.

Further, it was deliberated that higher instances of agricultural residue burning in and around NCR areas and also the forest fires in the nearby states could also be having an impact on the overall air quality of Delhi-NCR, they said in the release.

The Sub-Committee for GRAP, after comprehensively reviewing the air quality scenario, directed the concerned Pollution Control Boards (PCBs)/Committee of NCR and the stakeholders/agencies concerned to take the following urgent steps: to conduct intensive drives at major pollution hotspots in the region, focusing on dust abatement measures and their monitoring; to augment the number/frequency of water sprinklers and mechanical road sweeping equipment in the region.

Sub-Committee for GRAP also directed concerned agencies to keep a close watch on fire instances and open burning of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) in and around NCR, and ensure all preventive measures; directed Dust Control & Management Cells (DCMCs) in the Road Owning Agencies to keep a strong vigil on all road construction/maintenance projects for effective implementation of the prescribed measures,” as per the release.

It directed concerned agencies of NCR State PCBs/DPCC to intensify the enforcement mechanism of all dust control measures at C&D project sites; directed flying squads of CPCB to also intensify inspections for appropriate action against sites/projects flouting the statutory directions of the Commission.

“With collaborative and concerted efforts of all concerned agencies, the overall AQI of Delhi can be improved in the coming days. Further, the Sub-Committee shall be keeping a close watch on the situation and would frequently review the air quality scenario of Delhi-NCR accordingly,” they said in the release. 

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