Delhi residents, who are reeling under severe pollution since Diwali night, may find respite by Tuesday as strong winds are expected in the capital in next 24-48 hours, which will improve the air quality, predicted private weather forecaster Skymet.
Skymet Director Mahesh Palawat said strong winds from Punjab and Haryana will push the pollution away.
“Due to adverse weather condition like slow wind speed, high humidity and low temperature, pollutants are hanging close to the surface. However, strong winds of about 15-20 kmph are expected from the northwest in next 24-48 hours, which will help in fast dispersal of pollutants from the air,” Palawat said.
“On Tuesday morning, people may find mist due to low temperature. However, pollution level will go down and visibility will increase later in the day.”
Thick smog have shrouded Delhi since last Sunday as levels of particulate matter – PM 2.5 and PM 10 – shot up to the maximum level of 500 across the national capital due to fire crackers, stubble burning in neighbouring states, dust from construction activities and vehicular traffic.
Palawat added that air quality will improve further if strong winds continue for several more days, due to change in pressure in the Bay of Bengal.
The development may cause rains in Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh, and increase in pollution levels in Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, he said.
He also noted that stubble burning by farmers in the neighbouring states, which has added heavily to the current pollution scenario, will be over in next few days, which will stop further addition of pollutants in the air.
Palawat called the plan of artificial rains “infeasible” saying “there are no clouds to carry it out”.