Air pollution in the Indian capital is due to occur until November 18 due to ‘low winds’.
Authorities in India’s capital, New Delhi, have announced that schools will be closed for a week and will focus on “blocking pollution” to protect citizens from the spread of toxic fumes.
“Schools will be closed to prevent children from breathing polluted air,” Prime Minister Arvind Kejriwal told reporters on Saturday, adding that construction would be suspended for four days.
Government officials were asked to work from home and private businesses were advised to adopt home-based methods as best they could.
The city is one of the most polluted areas in the world, due to industrial and automotive emissions, as well as agricultural emissions, which are concentrated in the atmosphere by more than 20 million people during the winter.
On Saturday, the Supreme Court ordered the closure of Delhi to deal with the air crisis. “How are we going to live? Chief Justice NV Ramana said.
Kejriwal said his government would consider the court’s offer after consultation with stakeholders.
“The closure of the disaster has never happened. It will be a very dangerous step,” he said.
The Central Pollution Control Board on Friday advised governments to prepare for “implementation of” emergency “measures.
It also added that air pollution could occur until November 18 due to “less calm winds at night”.
On Saturday, portions of the PM 2.5 particles – the smallest and most harmful, which can be absorbed into the bloodstream – rose 300 percent in the airway system.
That is 20 times the daily average recommended by the World Health Organization.
Pavni Mittalm of Al Jazeera, from New Delhi, said people in the city had “been waking up with a lot of smoke” for more than a week.
“Things are getting worse this time of year,” he said, referring to the onset of winter and the rise of farm fires in neighboring countries, for a number of reasons.
The Delhi government has promised for years to clean up the city.
Burning of agricultural waste in the Delhi suburbs – which contributes significantly to the city’s demolition every winter – has continued despite a Supreme Court ruling.
Thousands of farmers around the world burn their stalks – or crop residues – early each winter, cutting down fields that have just been harvested to produce wheat.
The number of fires on farms this season has been the highest in the last four years, according to government data.
Earlier this year, the Delhi government opened its “first tower” with 40 large fans pumping 1,000 cubic meters of air per second through filters.
The $ 2m installation reduces the amount of harmful substances in the air but within a square mile (0.4 square miles), according to engineers.
A 2020 report by Swiss IQAir found that 22 of the 30 most polluted cities in the world were in India, while Delhi ranks as one of the most polluted cities in the world.