Deepavali: Area-wise AQI in Chennai paints a bleak picture
According to the Central Pollution Control Board's (CPCB) real-time air quality monitoring data, the air quality index (AQI) for Chennai on Monday at 8 am stood at 256 falling in the "poor" category
CHENNAI: A day after Chennai residents lit up the sky with firecrackers for the Deepavali festival, the air quality in the city deteriorated to '"poor" on Tuesday morning with a layer of haze enveloping the city.
According to the Central Pollution Control Board's (CPCB) real-time air quality monitoring data, the air quality index (AQI) for Chennai on Monday at 8 am stood at 256 falling in the "poor" category. The ambient air quality monitoring stations in the city recorded AQI in the range of 236 to 328 in five out of the seven stations while the station at Kodungaiyur showed AQI of 122. The data was not available for the Perungudi station.
As per the National Air Monitoring Programme's AQI scale, the air quality check between 0 and 50 is 'good', 51 and 100 'satisfactory', 101 and 200 'moderate', 201 and 300 'poor', 301 and 400 'very poor', and 401 and 450 'severe'.
"Moderate" air quality may cause breathing discomfort to people with lung, asthma and heart diseases as per the health statement for AQI categories. Under the poor category, most people will experience breathing discomfort during prolonged exposure.
Despite the TNPCB's direction to burst crackers from 6 am to 7 am and 7 pm to 8 pm, residents continued to burst crackers all through the day. As per the CPCB AQI data, the air quality started deteriorating on Saturday and it peaked on Sunday evening and night.
In a statement, the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) said that the average value of AQI observed on November 12 to 13 ending at 6 am in Chennai city ranges between 207 to 365. The lowest value of AQI was observed at Besant Nagar at 207 and the highest value of AQI was observed at Valasaravakkam at 365. The AQI recorded at Nungambakkam is (364), Sowcarpet (336), T Nagar (306), Triplicane "This may be attributed to a large number of people indulged in bursting of firecrackers (mainly night crackers and sky shots) and high relative humidity and low wind speed at Chennai.
The weather condition is not conducive to the effective dispersion of the smoke emanating from the bursting of crackers.
TNPCB has set up manual monitoring stations in seven different locations in Chennai at Besant Nagar, T Nagar, Nungambakkam, Triplicane, Sowcarpet, Valasaravakkam and Tiruvottiyur to monitor the impact of bursting crackers during the Deepavali festival on air quality and noise levels in the city.
As far as noise pollution is concerned, the noise level values observed on Deepavali day are higher than the national ambient noise standards (65 dB (A) during day time and 55 dB (A) during night time). On Sunday (from 6 pm to 12 am), the lowest noise level value observed was 60.5 dB (A) at T. Nagar and the highest noise level value was 83.6 dB (A) at Valasaravakkam.