Farmers in Punjab continue stubble burning as Delhi’s air quality plunges to hazardous

Delhi Pollution, Stubble Burning, Air Quality Index, AQI, Delhi Air Quality Index, Delhi AQI, Eastern Peripheral Expressway Delhi’s air quality usually starts plummeting during October because of slow winds and dropping temperatures. This weather condition traps pollutants like sand particles and smoke closer to the ground.

As winters are setting in and farmers prepare their fields for new crops in North Indian plains, Delhi’s air quality has plunged top hazardous level. According to the latest Air Quality Index (AQI) data, Anand Vihar in East Delhi recorded 699 on Air Quality Index which is hazardous to breathe.

According to the latest AQI data, Delhi’s Anand Vihar is at 699(Hazardous) on Air Quality Index #AQI pic.twitter.com/7f115dNBdb

— ANI (@ANI) October 13, 2018

Meanwhile, farmers in Amritsar’s Punjab and other parts of the Indus-Gangetic plains continue stubble burning. Talking to news agency ANI, a farmer from Amritsar said “Farmers have no other option but to burn stubble. We will not let the government impose fines on farmers for stubble burning. Industries & vehicles majorly contribute to pollution, not farmers.”

Punjab: Farmers in Amritsar continue stubble burning, say, “Farmers have no other option but to burn stubble. We will not let the government impose fines on farmers for stubble burning. Industries & vehicles majorly contribute to pollution not farmers ” pic.twitter.com/o9qf7tC3ad

— ANI (@ANI) October 13, 2018

While the blame-game is on, Delhi is staring at another smog-filled winter. In an unprecedented event this year, Delhi’s air turned so toxic in June that it went off measuring charts. This was due to severe dust storms from western deserts.

river of dust, high atmospheric aerosol loading, and hazardous air quality over N.I. subcontinent, as seen today by @nasa satellites and forecast at https://t.co/wBpx9GB1Cn – data from @NASAEarthData #worldview @airqualityindia @PakAirQuality @Open_AQ @jksmith34 @CBhattacharji pic.twitter.com/KnE25oTBJs

— NGEL (@nexgenearth) June 14, 2018

Delhi’s air quality usually starts plummeting during October because of slow winds and dropping temperatures. This weather condition traps pollutants like sand particles and smoke closer to the ground turning Delhi into a virtual ‘gas chamber’. It peaks dur9ing the festival of Diwali. Last year, according to some public health experts, inhaling Delhi’s air was as bad as smoking 50 cigarettes in a day. 14 out of the world’s 14 most polluted cities are in India and it has the highest rate of respiratory diseases anywhere in the world.

The Eastern Peripheral Expressway which was inaugurated by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi during 2018 summers has significantly cut down on the number of trucks and other commercial vehicles passing through the national capital. Its impact on Delhi’s pollution will be seen in the coming winters.

Source: Financial Express