CPCB report on air quality in Delhi during the period of Diwali, 27/11/2020

Report by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) in the matter of Tribunal on its own motion Vs Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change and Others dated 27/11/2020. The report was in compliance to the NGT order of November 5, 2020 in Original Application No. 249/2020. The tribunal had given certain directions on the ban on firecrackers.

In pursuance to the NGT order, the CPCB in its report mentioned the actions taken by it. The CPCB had carried out ambient air quality and noise level monitoring on selected pre-Diwali day and on Diwali day in Delhi. Air quality was monitored at 40 locations and ambient noise level was monitored at 16 locations. Three continuous air quality stations have been used for comparison with last five years’ data.

As observed from real-time monitoring network (37 CAAQM stations), the hourly average concentration of PM2.5 started increasing since 11 PM on 14th November and it reached peak in most of the stations at around 1 am and continued at higher levels till 5 am. The city level average calculated for PM10 and PM2.5 concentrations on Diwali day (November 14, 2020) was 645 μg/m3 and 483 μg/m3 respectively. Overall, this year Diwali witnessed higher background levels of pollutants during pre-Diwali days and further addition of particulates during night from firecrackers.