Panel lifts diesel generator set ban in Delhi-NCR, air quality still in ‘poor’ zone

Delhi: 18 Feb, 2022 (Times of India)

 

NEW DELHI: The central government’s panel on air quality has allowed the use of diesel generator (DG) sets in Delhi-NCR.

DG sets were banned by Commission for Air Quality Management in Delhi-NCR (CAQM) in an order dated October 28, 2021 as a pollution control measure under Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) when the city’s air quality was worsening. CAQM has now lifted the ban with immediate effect and allowed the operation of DG sets in view of the improvement in air quality in the region.

The decision has been taken based on meteorology and air-quality forecasts, CAQM stated. “The air quality index (AQI) has been in the moderate to poor category in the last four to five days, and a meeting was convened on February 16 to review the status. As per the inputs received from the IMD representative during the meeting, air quality in Delhi-NCR is not likely to reach into the ‘very poor’ category and is expected to be better in the coming days due to improved meteorological conditions favouring the dispersion of pollutants. Based on this forecast and prediction, the subcommittee on GRAP has decided that the measures under the very poor category of group, including ban on the use of diesel generator sets in Delhi-NCR, be lifted with immediate effect,” said CAQM in an order.

Meanwhile, the air quality of Delhi improved a tad on Thursday but continued to be in the ‘poor’ category. According to Central Pollution Control Board, the overall AQI, on a scale of 0 to 500, was 241 compared with 272 a day earlier.

According to pollution monitoring agencies, the air quality is likely to improve further from Saturday. “AQI today indicates ‘poor’. On 19th and 20th, AQI is likely to improve due to high wind speed and strong dispersion,” said a statement from SAFAR.

Delhi also recorded a slight rise in the mercury. According to India Meteorological Department, the minimum temperature on Thursday was recorded at 10.2 degrees Celsius, a degree below the season’s average. A day earlier, it was 9.4 degrees Celsius. The maximum temperature was recorded at 27 degrees Celsius, three notches above the season’s average. On Wednesday, it was 25.7 degrees Celsius.

On Friday, the mercury is likely to witness a maximum temperature of 27 degrees Celsius and the minimum will hover around 10 degrees.