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Gurugram: Pollution loosens grip, but curbs on | Gurgaon News 4/5 (1)

GURUGRAM: The city's air quality index witnessed an improvement due to favorable meteorological conditions on Saturday. It was in the 'very poor' category after two days of 'severe' air. The overall AQI was 357 (very poor) after two consecutive days of 'severe' air - it was 416 on Friday and 430 on Thursday.

Experts attributed the improvement to a change in wind direction along with increased speed and better ventilation, which helped in dispersal of pollutants.
"The air mixing height has slightly risen on Saturday, because of which ventilation is much better, helping dispersal of accumulated pollutants and slightly improving AQI," said Sachin Panwar, an independent air quality expert.
In tandem with the slight improvement in Delhi air quality on Saturday, the share of pollutants from stubble burning in the city's PM2.5 too reduced to 21% due to the change in wind direction, against 30% and 34% in the previous two days, pollution monitoring agencies said. The weather department expects further ventilation and improvement in the air quality. However, the restrictions under the "severe-plus" category of the Graded Response Action Plan (Grap) will continue.
"The air is likely to improve further but remain in the very poor category from November 6 to 8. In subsequent six days, the air is likely to remain largely in very poor category," stated the early warning system of Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology. The preemptive restrictive measures under GRAP are imposed based on the EWS forecasts.
On Saturday, the Indian Agriculture Research Institute had counted total 2817 fire spots in Punjab, 90 in Haryana and 24 in Uttar Pradesh. On Friday, Punjab had logged total 2,473 farm fires, while Haryana and UP logged 65 and 61, respectively, along with two incidents in Delhi. So far, since September 15, Delhi has logged total nine incidents of farm fires.
"The AQI today (Saturday) indicates 'upper end of very poor' air quality. The AQI is likely to improve due to unfavourable upper-level wind flow from stubble-burning areas, preventing inflow of pollutants to Delhi," said a statement from SAFAR.

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