Air pollution is not a new thing for Delhiites. The air quality in Delhi was already poor, now the situation has worsened. Every day Delhiites wake up to breathe air which has become highly contaminated with the soaring levels of PM2.5 and PM10, which have hit to its all-time high at 999 micrograms per cubic meter in areas like Punjabi Bagh and R.K. Puram. The current AQI of Delhi indicates pollution level has crossed hazardous state and causing serious health risks. It is dangerously dirty for children, pregnant women, senior citizens, heart, lung, and diabetic patients as much as it is harmful to an average healthy person who has no previous history of medical ailments. Basically, no one is left untouched by the rising smog and its effects on Delhi. On roads, you would see traffic policemen, cyclers, bikers, and other aware groups wearing masks to save them from inhaling unfiltered and lethal air.

Health experts say the reason behind contaminated air, water, or soil is the excessive construction of buildings in the city, dust particles emerging from vehicular emissions, and stubble burning in Punjab and Haryana that contributes immensely to the dreadful pollution in the air. Although 90% of the households are using Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) for cooking, there is still 10% of the population whose source of cooking their food comes from burning cow dung, coal and wood, and crop-remains.

Image Courtesy: Business Line

Effects of Poor Air Quality On Delhiites

Our government has initiated some steps, such as closing brick kilns, banning to burn garbage and firecrackers, and making paved parking lots and unmetalled roads, to control dust pollution. In addition to this, the government is doing lots of other programs, such as cyclotrons’ and marathons, for Delhiites and in other cities to generate awareness on the deteriorating condition of the air. Furthermore, on Saturday, 4th November 2017, Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority chairman ‘Dr. Bhure Lal’ along with his other officials has visited the pollution hotspot ‘Anand Vihar’ of Delhi only to find out that its air quality has entered in the ‘severe’ category which is a result of open garbage lying on the streets and people urinating on the roadside. He instructed his team to construct urinals, place signboards to charge Rs. 1000/- as a fine if bus drivers drop their passengers near any entrances, and add greenery on many locations to discourage people from littering.

How to Save Ourselves from Poor AQI?

There is no need to wait for an environmental disaster to happen to humanity as we cannot ignore global warming. The gas responsible for most of the warming is Carbon Dioxide (CO2). Levels of CO2 have increased so much because of the loss of forests that could otherwise store CO2 and from the combustion of fossil fuels during electricity production. We can all prevent this disaster by planting more and more trees and work towards bringing a change by supporting various awareness drives, such as following another round of odd-even initiatives and considering the concept of cloud seeding which brings artificial rain and can, hence, settle down pollutants in the air and improves visibility. All of this effort is worth building a beautiful environment to give as the best gift to our future generations.

Dear Delhi and Delhiites, it’s too late and we are already on the edge of the problem. From this point, you’re left with no way to escape the consequences of air pollution and save yourself. So, stop ignoring and do something about it rather than holding back and doing nothing.