A Central Pollution Control Board-led task force has advised people to minimize outdoor exposure for the next three to five days and avoid using private vehicles, with Delhi's air quality slipping to the severe category.
The national capital witnessed its second-highest pollution level this year today with authorities saying that the air quality is likely to remain severe for the next couple of days.
CPCB shows AQI at 446 while SAFAR shows at 471
While the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) data showed the overall air quality index (AQI) at 446, the Center-run System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting (SAFAR) gave a much higher AQI of 471.
The CPCB-led task force held a meeting yesterday in response to the high PM2.5 levels which climbed to the severe plus emergency category recently.
The meeting resulted in various recommendations to improve air quality
Exposure to PM2.5 pollutants can lead to diseases like cancer and it increases the chances of stroke.
A number of recommendations were made at the meeting to the Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution Control Authority.
The recommendations include agencies to intensify ground actions to enforce measures already in place particularly to control emissions from vehicles and the burning of biomass.
Here are the other recommendations made to curb pollution
The other recommendations are (A) Agencies concerned to increase surveillance to find industrial waste dumping or burning especially in hotspots vulnerable to high-pollution level, (B) Water sprinkling and mechanized sweeping to be intensified, and (C) Traffic police to ensure smooth flow of traffic.
'Severe' air quality may continue for next 2-3 days
The task force urged people to avoid using private vehicles, particularly diesel vehicles, and minimize outdoor exposure for the next three to five days, especially for those with respiratory illness, the CPCB said.
A prolonged period of light winds, low temperature is likely to continue for the next 3-5 days and the current severe air quality may continue for next 2-3 days, said IMD.