On January 1 the air quality of the city was better than that recorded in the last four years, but after a day of respite, it has again gone back to being bad. On January 2, The air quality in Mumbai was recorded at 247. 

On Wednesday morning, the air quality index SAFAR recorded the AQI at 174 but it continued to get worse as the day progressed. The average for the day was 204, which is considered poor. The average recording for Thursday is even worse. 

According to the experts at Safar attributed, higher humidity, lower temperatures and calm winds for the high AQI in the city. For those unaware, high moisture content increases the pollutant-carrying capacity of air. On Thursday, at 8.30 am, the humidity levels recorded by IMD’s Santacruz and Colaba observatories were 90% and 87% respectively. While the same at 8.30 pm was recorded at 59% and 67% respectively. 

SAFAR is currently monitoring 10 locations in Mumbai. Out of these 10, Bhandup was the least polluted with an AQI of 120, while the most polluted were Bandra-Kurla Complex and Borivli—306 and 303 respectively.

The temperature of the city is now on an upward trend. It had touched a minimum of 15 degrees on New Year's eve and was recorded at 17.2 degrees at Santacruz and 18.5 degrees in Colaba. According to IMD, the temperature in the city is expected to increase till January 5 and then dip again. 

Decoding the AQI parameters

  • An AQI between 0-50 is considered "good"
  • An AQI between 51-100 "satisfactory"
  • An AQI between 101-200 "moderate"
  • An AQI between 201-300 "poor"
  • An AQI between 301-400 "very poor"
  • An AQI between 401-500 "severe"
  • An AQI above 500 is "severe-plus or emergency" category
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