Amidst the lockdown due to outbreak of Coronavirus, Mumbai saw improvement in its air quality. According to the researchers at the System of Air Quality Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), there has been a considerable reduction in nitrogen oxide levels (NOx), a gas released during fuel combustion and in high concentrations can cause inflammation in the windpipe.
The air quality monitoring body stated on Monday, March 23, that in Pune 15 percent reduction in NOx was observed whereas, Mumbai saw a 30 percent reduction and 53 percent reduction in Ahmedabad this year. SAFAR further stated that NOx which was declining has been observed slumping post a sudden spike on March 18, due to mild dust lifting.
On March 22, the day when Janta Curfew was observed across the country, NOx levels declined by 30 per cent as compared to earlier days. Andheri in Mumbai saw maximum reduction accounting to 25 percent, followed by Borivali.
Considering March 2018 and 2019, this year the NOx levels reduced by 45 percent. Also, drop in PM2.5 level has been recorded. Mumbai recorded AQI of 68 on Sunday, March 22. The AQI of 68 falls under the satisfactory category. The AQI has been in ‘satisfactory’ category since March 20, 2020.