Delhi: Air quality in severe category

As per Central Pollution Control Board’s data, air quality of Delhi has deteriorated to “severe” category on November 5, after Diwali.


  • The Air Quality Index (AQI) of Delhi was recorded as 444 on November 5 at 6 a.m. By 8 am, it worsened to 451.
  • Air pollution of severe levels affects healthy people. It also has serious impacts to people with existing diseases.
  • Air quality is likely to improve from November 7.

What is National Air Quality Index?

National Air Quality Index was launched in 2014, with the tagline ‘One Number – One Colour -One Description’. It was launched for the common man to judge air quality locally. Air quality is measured on the basis of eight pollutants- Particulate Matter (PM10), Particulate Matter (PM2.5), Sulphur Dioxide (SO2), Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2), Ozone (O3), Carbon Monoxide (CO), Lead (Pb) and Ammonia (NH3).

Categories of AQI

AQI has six categories of air quality namely, Severe, Very Poor, Poor, Moderately Polluted, Satisfactory and Good.

How AQI is determined?

AQI between 0 & 50 is considered Good, between 51 & 100 as satisfactory, between 101 & 200 as moderate, between 201 & 300 as poor, between 301 & 400 as very poor while in between 401 & 500 as severe.

Who developed the AQI?

AQI was developed by Central Pollution Control board (CPCB) in association with the IIT-Kanpur and an expert group consisting of medical & air-quality professionals.

Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB)

CPCB is a statutory organisation, that works under the Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change. It was established in 1974 under the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act. It was entrusted with functions and responsibilities later in accordance with Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981.


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