This indicates that poor air quality is a problem consistently affecting the region, beyond winter and individual weather events.
Delhi's pollution level decreased today but continued to remain in the "severe" category, even as authorities expressed hope that the air quality would improve during the day due to dispersion of pollutants. Online air quality monitors of Delhi Pollution Control Committee in Delhi show huge escalation of particulate levels.
According to the U.S. Embassy's real-time air quality index, the air quality was so poor in some parts of Delhi on Wednesday that it was beyond the maximum level.
According to CPCB, Delhi-NCR witnessed a sudden spurt in air pollution on June 13. It was 124 in Delhi-NCR and Delhi today, the CPCB data said. Thus, we can say that relief may be in sight during the coming days. The particles can be inhaled deep into the lungs, causing heart attacks, strokes, lung cancer and respiratory diseases.
Government officials also mentioned that to measure pollutant levels or aerosol loads in Delhi region, the norms or prescribed standards of World Health Organisation (WHO) can not be considered in highly populated region like Delhi.
The air quality in Delhi deteriorated beyond the "severe" level because of a ground-level dust storm in western India. This is followed by pollution from passenger vehicles including exhaust emissions and associated suspended dust. A report issued by the World Health Organisation last month claimed that the world's 14 most polluted cities are in India, with Delhi the sixth most polluted city.
The introduction of the odd-even rule was expected to reduce pollution levels in the capital region.
Upon reaching AQI readings above 200, the government is mandated to authorise actions that will inhibit the worsening of the situation and avoid "emergency" levels.
Chairing an emergency meeting in view of severe dust pollution in Delhi, Baijal also ordered the municipal corporations and the Public Works Department (PWD) to intensify mechanical road sweeping, sprinkling of non-potable water at central verges and roadsides and stop brooming activity on main roads.