Delhi smog live updates:Odd-even scheme from Nov 13-17 in the national capital called off
Delhi and Punjab governments announced complete closure of schools till Sunday following weather forecasts that situation is unlikely to improve soon.
In light of the the two conditions by NGT on 2 wheelers & women, at the moment we are calling it off. We will go back to NGT on Monday, file a review petition for them to reconsider their decision regarding the two: Kailash Gehlot, Delhi Transport Minister.
Pollution level in North India remains severe, Varanasi tops the list
United Airlines suspends it’s Newark-New Delhi flight due to poor air quality concerns in Delhi.
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal calls an emergency meeting in view of NGT's order on odd-even scheme. Meeting to begin shortly.
NGT directs Delhi Govt to reconsider decision to hike parking charges by four times in Delhi.
Emergency vehicles to get an exemption from the Odd-Even scheme.
NGT directed 'Odd-Even scheme must be implemented in Delhi NCR as and when PM 10 crosses 300 level and PM 2.5 crosses 500'.
Giving nod to the odd-even scheme, NGT directs 'no exemption' for two-wheelers, govt servants or women.
National Green Tribunal gives nod to the Odd-Even scheme.
NGT directs all the neighboring state Govts and departments to ensure complete mechanism during environmental emergency, says don't wait for crisis situation. Also directed various departments and executing agencies for better cooperation and coordination including Delhi police.
NGT asked the Delhi government "Won't the hike of parking fees only benefit the parking lots, and would stress people even further, thereby encouraging them to park vehicles on the roads instead, choking them in the process?".
The National Green Tribunal asks Uttar Pradesh Government over the number of violators challaned in Noida and Greater Noida.
The NGT observed 'it is most worrying that there is absolute non cooperation between various departments of govt'.
NGT pulls up CMD of DTC for not reading the former judgements in this regard. NGT observed that it was unfortunate. NGT asked DTC on the number of its unused buses in its workshops.
The National Green Tribunal asks CPCB, DPCC and Delhi Govt 'why didn't you implement it earlier?'.
NGT asked Delhi Govt about reasons behind exemptions and the impact of pollution emanating from two-wheelers, and whether they intend to employ this scheme of Odd-Even whenever the pollution levels spiral, to which the Delhi Govt stated that this couldn't be said as of now.
Central Pollution Control Board submitted before the National Green Tribunal that rain could take place in the next two days.
NGT asked the Centre and the Delhi government to name a big city where PM 10 levels were lower than 100.
NGT observed that its patience shouldn't be tested, asking the Delhi government that when the statistics have indicated that rain leads to a fall in pollution levels, why wasn't action taken ? It's now being taken after the Tribunal said so.
NGT to Delhi government: So we should assume that the government is sure of the odd even scheme's benefit, and of no inconvenience taking place to the citizens?
NGT asks AAP dispensation if Odd-Even car rationing scheme is being implemented with consent of both LG and Delhi Govt.
NGT asks Delhi Government the rationale behind applying the odd-even scheme, and why it wasn't applied when the air quality situation was worse.
Hearing in the National Green Tribunal underway: The bench is headed by Justice Swatantra Kumar. Advocate Tarunvir Kehar is Delhi Govt's counsel, in the case.
Light rains expected in Delhi, may clear smog: Met office
Delhi woke up to a hazy morning today, with the weather office predicting light rainfall later in the day, which may clear the smog enveloping the national capital.
A dense blanket of smog enveloped Delhi this week, prompting authorities to announce the "odd-even" rationing of cars from November 13 for five days, closure of schools till tomorrow and a four-fold hike in parking fee for vehicles.
According to the Met department, humidity levels in the national capital shot up to 91 per cent this morning.
"The minimum temperature was recorded at 12.6 degrees Celsius, a notch below normal," an official of the department said. Visibility was recorded at 800 metres at 5.30 AM, which dropped further to 500 metres by 8.30 AM.
The maximum temperature is expected to settle at 30 degrees Celsius, the official said.
It was a foggy Saturday morning with the minimum temperature recorded at 12.6 degrees Celsius, a notch below the season's average.
At least 64 trains were delayed, 14 rescheduled and two trains were cancelled due to the shallow fog in northern India.
"The sky will remain partly cloudy during the day, with mist and shallow fog in the morning," an official of the India Meteorological Department said.
Humidity at 8.30 a.m. was 91 per cent.
The cancelled trains include -- New Delhi-Jaynagar Swatantrata Senani Express and Delhi-Alipurdwar Mahananda Express.
According to the Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL), no flights were delayed or cancelled.
The Delhi Government has asked the National Green Tribunal (NGT) to exempt industries catering to essential services from its ban order. NGT also rapped the government for announcing the Odd-Even scheme despite reports that it was ineffective.
The NGT said, "Odd-Even formula can't be imposed like this. Nothing has been done from your (Delhi govt) end since the past one year."
It added, "SC never asked for imposition of this scheme. SC and NGT have suggested 100 measures to curb pollution but you always opted for odd-even. Delhi government will have to justify the implementation of this scheme."
The NGT asked the Delhi government to give an undertaking that the Odd-Even scheme will be rolled out only when particulate matter levels are over 300.
Delhi Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot tweeted, "To encourage use of public transport during Odd-Even, Delhi govt to allow free travel for commuters in all DTC and Cluster buses from 13-17 November"
To encourage use of public transport during Odd- Even, Delhi govt to allow free travel for commuters in all DTC and Cluster buses from 13-17 November.— Kailash Gahlot (@kgahlot) November 10, 2017
The air quality in Delhi remained 'severe' for another day. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will hold a meeting on the implementation of the odd-even policy today.
The Delhi government has brought back odd-even plan to check rising pollution level in the capital. It will be implemented from Nov 13 and will end on Nov 17, and like last time two-wheelers and women drivers will be exempt.
NGT asks Delhi govt to impose 1 lakh fine on builders found violating directions, as construction work has been halted in view of smog & air pollution.
NGT has directed states to ensure that there should be no crop burning, says if any incident is reported to NGT, a considerable amount of fine will be charged from salary of responsible officer.
The NGT has also directed directs civic bodies to constitute teams to ensure there is no burning of waste in Delhi-NCR. The green panel has also asked authorities to implement EPCA's directions to improve ambient air quality.
It has also directed sprinkling of water where PM 10 is found to be in excess of 600 micrograms per cubic metre.
Earlier in the day, the NGT slammed Delhi government, blaming it for the current situation. "You've made a mess of Delhi. You have done what you had to, now we will decide what you have to do. Why didn’t you issue any direction for shutting down polluting industries and construction. You did it yesterday as we told you to do so. Go to the hospital see number of patients that are being admitted," it said.
The NHRC has sent notices to Centre, Delhi, Punjab and Haryana govts on "life-threatening" pollution in Delhi-NCR
Despite clampdown, stubble burning in Haryana continues adding to Delhi's worsening pollution levels.
The smog delayed 41 trains in Delhi , rescheduled 9 and 10 were cancelled.
HC ISSUES EMERGENCY DIRECTIONS TO CURB KILLER FOG IN DELHI
Calling it an "emergency situation", a bench of Justices S Ravindra Bhat and Sanjeev Sachdeva asked the government to consider the option of "cloud seeding" to induce rainfall artificially, as an immediate step to bring down the dust and particulate matter in the atmosphere.
It directed the Delhi government to seriously consider a ban on further construction in the city to the extent possible and implementing the 'odd-even' vehicle usage scheme as a short term measure.
"What we are facing today has already been faced by London. They call it a pea soup fog. It is a killer. Stubble burning is the visible villain in it, but there are other elephants in the room," the bench said. Read all about it
STORY SO FAR
Delhi and Punjab governments announced complete closure of schools till Sunday following weather forecasts that situation is unlikely to improve soon with very dense fog expected to cover many places in Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and north Rajasthan in the morning hours till November 10. People rushed to buy masks to save themselves from the toxic smog as level of particulate matter 2.5 over Delhi touched 517 microgram per cubic metre, which is more than ten times the safe level.
The air quality was equally bad in bigger National Capital Region, and it’s forecast to worsen on Thursday. “The situation can become worse and conditions deteriorate as we are in accumulation phase of dust particle due to no winds in the region,” said D Saha, head air quality, Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). “Things may improve by Saturday,” he said.
Meanwhile, smog and second day of closure of one of the runways at Delhi airport continued to impact operations at Delhi airport, which saw flights operating with delays of up to 2 hours impacting the plans of many fliers. Over 250 flights were delayed at Delhi airport, causing spillover delays across the country.
SPIKE IN AIR PURIFIER SALES
Air purifiers manufacturers are witnessing a spike in sales in the Capital and adjoining areas as consumers resort to panic buying with air pollution in Delhi-NCR breaching critical limit. Companies like Xiaomi, Eureka Forbes, Blue Air, Panasonic India, Honeywell and Sharp said they have witnessed multi-fold jump in demand for air purifiers in the last couple of days.
Air purifiers from different brands are available at a price range of Rs 9,000 to Rs 36,000 depending on power and features.
MORE METRO TRAINS
The metro and Delhi Transport Corporation announced decisions to augment services by pressing more trains and buses into service, in a bid to reduce dependence on private vehicles.
Delhi lieutenant governor Anil Baijal on Wednesday banned entry of trucks into the capital until further instructions.
Trucks carrying essential commodities like food items have been exempted. He has also instructed civic bodies and the Delhi Metro to hike parking fees, as directed by the Supreme Court appointed Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) to dissuade use of personal cars. The three civic bodies are yet to implement parking fee hike, but Delhi Metro has decided to increase train capacity by carrying out 186 additional trips from Thursday.
NO RESPITE TILL WEEKEND
According to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), which tracks air quality of different cities in India, strong winds blowing at 15 to 20 km per hour at a height from ground have been bringing external pollutants from Punjab and Haryana into Delhi. With high humidity of 90% and low wind speed, pollutants are getting trapped. SAFAR has forecast increase in the concentration of fine particles of pollutants on Thursday.
Madhavan Rajeevan, secretary, ministry of earth sciences, tweeted: “Delhi smog is not localised as seen in satellite image. Stable atmospheric and wind conditions favour severe pollution. Stable conditions are likely to continue next 2-3 days, which can trap smog close to surface. Weather only a modulator, source however man made. Take care.”
CHECK STUBBLE BURNING
Union environment minister Harsh Vardhan called on the neighbouring states to check stubble burning. "I call for cost effective measures since management of air pollution requires sustained actions over a long period of time to be effective. I'd also like to request the state governments of Punjab, Haryana and UP to implement the ban related to stubble burning," he tweeted.