Toxic Ozone level rises with increase in temperature in Delhi: MET

Toxic ozone levels have breached the permissible limits with the increasing temperature and dust in Delhi, said the Indian Meteorological Department (MET). MET issued a warning note and said that with temperature fluttering above 40 degree Celsius, the toxic ozone that causes a number of health problems reached highest this year in past two weeks in the national capital

Scientists say that with the increasing temperature surface ozone increases along with the increase in the levels of carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide. While analysing the toxic ozone levels, MET noticed that national capital has huge variation where some areas have very high surface ozone level while some still have permissible levels (50 ppb).

“However, with rising temperature, the level of toxic ozone in Delhi has shot up and was the highest during the last two weeks this year. In some areas of Delhi NCT, surface ozone (8 sunlit hour average) touched as high as 120 ppb (part per billion), which is classified as poor in Air Quality Index,” Gufran Beig, Project Director, System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting Research (SAFAR), said.

Usually, Delhi’s air pollution is due to particulate matters like dust, smoke or dirt and not so much due to surface ozone like in western countries. According to MET, Pusa region where the temperature is nearly 3-4 degree less was recorded with minimum ozone level of 60-80 ppb.

While talking of huge variation, Mr Beig said that the variations are understandable since nitrogen oxide and carbon monoxide levels are vastly variable along with temperature. He further added that after two days increased levels of ozone will start seeing a decline as cloudy conditions will hit the national capital resulting in a fall in temperature.

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