For the second day in a row, Mumbai’s air quality was worse than India’s capital Delhi, which has gained the infamous “gas chamber” tag over the years.
According to the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology-managed System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), at 7:37 pm on Thursday, the overall Air Quality Index (AQI) of Mumbai was 146 against Delhi’s 108.
An AQI between 201 and 300 is considered ‘poor’, 301-400 ‘very poor’, and 401-500 ‘severe’, while the AQI between zero and 50 is considered ‘good’, 51 and 100 ‘satisfactory’ and between 101 and 200 ‘moderate’.
Delhi’s air quality starts deteriorating every year from October due to several factors including stubble burning in Punjab and other areas and a drop in temperatures and reaches hazardous levels around Diwali.
The Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM), a statutory body tasked with air quality management in the Delhi-NCR region, released a report in August which said that Delhi witnessed the highest number of days (163) with “good” to “moderate” air quality (daily average AQI less than 200) during the January-August period in 2023 as compared to the corresponding period in the last five years.
Last month, the Delhi government launched an action plan aimed at addressing air pollution during the winter season in the city.
WHAT IS MAKING MUMBAI’S AIR WORSE THAN DELHI?
Officials have blamed a blanket of mist which enveloped Mumbai for the last three to four days as the reason behind air quality plummeting in India’s financial capital.
Mumbai’s guardian minister Deepak Kesarkar on Wednesday claimed that ongoing works of development projects such as the metro were causing dust pollution in the city and asserted it was not a “chemical pollution”.
Works of metro, bridges as well as real estate projects are going on in the city, he said.