Increase in pollution levels in Mumbai

Since February 6, 2022, Mumbai has witness high levels of pollution, with its air quality index (AQI) reading reached above 300 frequently.


  • On February 6, AQI in Mumbai reached to 316, followed by 318 on February 7 and 320 on February 320.
  • AQI ranging between 301 and 400 is categorised as ‘red’ or ‘very poor’.
  • On February 8, AQI in Mazgaon reached to 495. It is the most polluted area in Mumbai. AQI was reading in the ‘severe’ category.
  • As per SAFAR, Overall AQI was in ‘very poor’ category, worse than Pune, Delhi, and Ahmedabad.

What is AQI?

AQI is a mean of pollutants like particulate matter (PM2.5 and PM10), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), ozone (O3), carbon monoxide (CO) emissions and sulphur dioxide (SO2). It is derived as a single value. Higher the AQI, greater is the level of air pollution and more serious the health concern.

What is reason of increasing pollution in Mumbai?

  • As per SAFAR, high pollution is Mumbai is the result of second dust storm in less than two weeks.
  • This storm originated over Afghanistan, Pakistan, and border areas of Rajasthan, on February 3, 2022.
  • In the month of January, a storm originated in the Middle East and brought haze and dust to north-western Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Gujarat.
  • Low day temperatures, high relative humidity, weak, low-speed winds, and coldness of air are the contributing factors to bad air above the city.
  • Minimum temperature has fallen from 19.4 degrees Celsius on February 7 to 17.8 degrees on February 8.
  • In Mumbai, bad air is cleaned out regularly by a strong sea breeze. But Low wind speeds results meant that local pollutants in city have not been effectively dispersed.

When will this situation improve?

SAFAR indicates that, situation is city will improve over the next two days, slightly to the ‘poor’ category’ with AQI of 201-300.



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