How we can improve the air quality index of Delhi

An AQI meter that change from a yellow to an orange and eventually red, marks the time of the year when pollution that surrounds the national capital starts to become noticeably visible. From the onset of winter months onwards sequence of events unfold, an annually familiar site now.

We hear the term – Delhi is choking very often now. About 23 million tons of Paddy stubble is burned every year, a recurrent annual problem for northern India has now been escalated to an alarming issue of pollution crisis that seeks for a solution on urgent basis. Where farmers are unable to adopt alternative methods to clear stubble for the next round of harvest, all it takes for them to attain clear fields is a tiny spark of fire. The occurrence yet again exposes the incompetence in the measures adopted by the authorities in resolving the crisis as the citizens await year every year chocking from breathing the toxic gas.

Paddy harvesting

In what is already aggravated due to festive fireworks, the period also coincides with a northern farming practice of clearing fields to prepare for the next round of harvest, the farmers hence indulge themselves in the activity of stubble burning at a vast scale. Paddy harvesting is also having been extended to the end of October due to guidelines generated to prevent the dependency of farming on groundwater lead to a crunch in days for the farmer to sow the winter crop hence resulting in stubble burning for a quicker cleaning of fields. Farmers of the northern belt are often subjected to the blame for burning crops that hence lead to a pollution menace as the states of Punjab and Haryana record from a poor to severe air quality, including neighboring Delhi entrapping citizens to breathe toxic air for days.

An End To The Problem? 

An end to field fires is far from over as Delhi and the northern states await this dreaded period of the year where those living in it go trapped in what by now resembles a gas chamber. The point in question – Where are we going wrong? Who takes the blame and is held accountable? Do we have a viable solution yet? Amidst the spiral of blames and rejection for the use of bio-decomposers, the use of machinery leading to additional operational expenses in clearing stubble and the subsidies provided by the government, the issue ever entangles between the authorities and the farmers, the cords of which continue to choke the health of those residing in the northern belt of the nation.

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