NEW DELHI: After seven years, the morning after Diwali night remained the least polluted as the Air Quality Index remained in the lower scale of ‘very poor’ zone with a reading of 303. Though government tried to take credit of the scenario with its blanket ban order of sale, purchase, stock, use and distribution of fire crackers, the environment watchdog ruled it out as the only factor behind less pollution post Diwali.
Apart from burning less firecrackers this Diwali, a report issued by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) cited winds, warm conditions, fewer farm fires around the festival, which, unlike previous years, did not allow pollution to increase this year.
Even though pollution monitoring agencies said bursting of firecrackers was reported from Delhi-NCR, constant winds blew away the smoke, allowing dispersion.The DPCC claimed a reduction of 30% in overall pollution levels as compared to that of last year when post-Diwali, the AQI was 462 in the higher end of the ‘severe’ zone.
The city pollution watchdog also mentioned a decline of up to 64% in particulate matters.“In view of Ambient Air Quality Assessment with respect to Particulate Matter in year 2022, overall % reduction observed in City average Concentration of PM10 is 57% and PM2.5 is 64% compared to 2021,” the DPCC report said.
Meanwhile, more than 50% reduction in farm fires from Punjab and warm weather also saved city residents from inhaling hazardous air, according to the report.
“Ambient Air Quality found to be better than the previous year. The probable reasons may be: i) 56% reduction in residue burning events on Diwali in Punjab this year compared to 2021; ii) better wind speed of 06-08 kmph with clear sky and moderate conditions for dispersion of pollutants; iii) higher temperatures varying between 15 C to 36° C this year and less bursting of firecrackers in year 2022 compared to year 2021,” the report stated.
According to the DPCC, wind speed during the festival last year was 02-08 kph while the temperature observed was 10 C to 33 C.