New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Dense smog continues to shroud Delhi as the air quality in national capital turns severe on Saturday morning. According to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR), the air quality index (AQI) in Delhi was recorded at 486 on Saturday morning as farmers in Punjab and nearby regions continued to set their fields on fire to clear crop residue.

The smog shrouded several parts of the Delhi, including Burari, Peera Garhi, Kashmere Gate and Mukherjee Nagar area leading to decreased visibility. The levels of PM2.5 – finer particles which can even enter the bloodstream – were 292 µg/m3 at 9 am. PM2.5 levels up to 60 µg/m3 are considered safe. PM10 levels in Delhi-NCR stood at 486 micrograms per cubic meter (µg/m3) at 9 am, according to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) data.

The central government's Air Quality Early Warning System for Delhi said the city's air quality is likely to remain "severe" on Diwali as well. It said the AQI is likely to remain in the "upper end of 'very poor' category on November 13 and 'severe' category on November 14 (Diwali)".

An AQI between 0-50 is marked good, 51-100 is satisfactory, 101-200 is moderate, 201-300 is poor, 301-400 is very poor and 401-500 is considered severe. According to experts, the severe category affects the health of people and seriously impacts those with existing diseases. According to experts, the severe category affects the health of people and seriously impacts those with existing diseases.

SAFAR said the share of stubble burning in Delhi's PM2.5 pollution was estimated at 21 per cent on Friday. It was 42 per cent on Thursday, the maximum so far this season. Last year, the contribution of stubble burning to Delhi's pollution had peaked to 44 per cent on November 1, according to SAFAR data.

Posted By: Talib Khan