The AQI at the Victoria Memorial read at 355 – marked as very poor – at 7 pm. (FILE PHOTO)
The air quality in Kolkata reached the severe level on Saturday in the congested areas of the north of the West Bengal capital, readings of the West Bengal Pollution Control Board revealed.
The air quality index (AQI) read 411 PM 2.5 at the air monitoring station of WBPCB at Rabindra Bharati University, one of the two automated air monitoring stations of WBPCB in Kolkata.
The AQI at the second computerised air monitoring station of WBPCB at Victoria Memorial read at 355 AQI – marked as very poor – at 7 pm, the reading said.
The AQI is an indicator of air pollution caused by three pollutants – NO2, PM 10 and PM 2.5. The index indicates air quality as ‘good’ for values of 0-100, ‘moderate’ for 101-200 and ‘poor’ for 201-300.
On December 10, the AQI at WBPCB’s air monitoring station at Rabindra Bharati University, was 407 PM 2.5 which is ‘severe’ in air monitoring terms at certain period (2 pm).
On December 10 again, the AQI at the WBPCB’s second automatic air monitoring station at Victoria Memorial, which is considered a green zone, read at 327 PM 2.5, ‘very poor’, at 2 pm.
Expressing concern over what will be the AQI during Christmas and New year, Environmentalist SM Ghosh said burning waste in the open on a massive scale at a spot in the northern fringes of Kolkata was also leading to the alarming rise in pollution levels, but the West Bengal government was taking very little action.
“The state seems to be sleeping with one eye open,” he claimed.