Study on air pollution trends (2010-2015) due to fireworks during Diwali festival in Delhi, India
Keywords:Fireworks, Diwali, Aerosols, Criteria pollutants, NAAQS.
The burning of massive amount of fire crackers on the evening(s) of a nation-wide celebrated festival called ‘Diwali’ in India, gives rise to a remarkably high concentration of criteria air pollutants and it is of utmost importance to investigate the impact of such high loads originated during a relatively shorter time span in a mega-city like Delhi where the situation of ambient air quality has already been alarming almost through-out the year. In view of the same, the present study analyzes available concentration data during this festival’s night for five criteria pollutants namely PM10 , PM2.5 , SO2 , NO2 , and CO (Particulate Matter, Sulfur Dioxide, Nitrogen Dioxide and Carbon Monoxide respectively) along with NH3 at six key locations of Delhi. Following the analysis, PM10
concentration in Anand Vihar during nighttime of Diwali was reported to be ~8 times higher than the 24 hours values prescribed by National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). On the other hand, the same at IGI airport was recorded lowest even though about 3.5 times that of the guiding standard. PM2.5 concentrations were reported as highest and lowest at RK Puram and Civil lines respectively, in both the cases quite exceeding the comparable standard values. Interestingly, remaining criteria pollutants, namely, SO2 , NO2 and CO along with NH3 measured in 2015 showed no values in excess of corresponding 24-hrs guidelines, thereby reporting a better scenario compared to previous years. Further, the extensive use of firecrackers during Diwali festival leads to substantial increase in air pollutants necessitating special measures to control.
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