After toxic level rises in Delhi’s air quality, experts warn of respiratory issues

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delhi air pollution

The national capital Delhi air quality was reported on the upper layer of very poor category on Wednesday. According to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR), the city’s overall Air Quality Index (AQI) was recorded at 339 in the very poor category this morning.

Prof. Gufran Beig, Founder Project Director, SAFAR said that the ratio of PM2.5 to PM10 is above 60 per cent these days that indicates that fine particles are high in abundance and hence relatively high level of toxicity is prevailing.

“The present worsening air quality in Delhi is mainly due to persistent fog and falling temperatures. The contribution of advective fog which generates over the entire Indo-Gangetic region and brings parcels of toxic particles along is high. Normally contribution of finer particles, PM2.5, which are more toxic then coarser one remains below 50% in PM10”, Prof Beig said.

He said that the fact that ratio of PM2.5 to PM10 is above 60% these days indicates that fine particles are high in abundance and hence relatively high level of toxicity is prevailing which has more serious health implications as these are easily inhalable.

The very poor category air quality may trigger health complications like problems in breathing. People with heart and lung disease are advised to avoid longer or heavy exertion. The health experts advise that even the indoor activities must keep at low levels for those suffering with sensitive issues during poor air quality.

Commenting on deteriorating air quality of capital city, Dr Harshal Salve, Additional Professor, Centre for Community medicine at Delhi AIIMS, said that the prolonged exposure to such toxic air could lead to serious multiple problems apart from the respiratory issues.

“Those persons suffering with COPD and other respiratory disease must use the N95 mask while going outside and outdoor export”, said Dr Salve. Emphasising on the outdoor activities should immediately be stopped, he said that everyone should avoid going outside from 10 PM to 8 Am in morning as the concentration level of pollutants remain on peak during the period.

Dr Shuchin Bajaj ,Founder, Director Ujala Cygnus, said that pollution kills more than 9 million people every year and causes economic loose worth trillions of dollar which is more than 7 per cent of the total world’s GDP, but we keep focusing more on other diseases like cancer and heart disease etc.

“We should not forget that pollution is one of the biggest causes of lung cancer, heart disease and various other diseases and it should to combated at national as well as local level. And we need to make sure that our cites which are some of most polluted in the world get free from this biggest pandemic which is much bigger than covid”, Dr Bajaj said.