Mumbai: After the season's hottest Monday this week at 38.1°C, the maximum temperature dropped slightly, to 36.5°C, on Wednesday. The air quality in the city also improved marginally on Tuesday, although it remained in the ‘very poor’ category.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) attributed the rise in temperature on Monday to the combined effect of strong south-easterly winds blowing from the land and low humidity, predicting that temperatures are likely to drop further in the next 24 hours. “There has been a slight drop in the temperature compared to Monday and Tuesday. This will further drop by 2-3°C in the next 24-48 hours,” said KS Hosalikar, deputy general director, IMD.
The maximum temp dropped from 38.1°C recorded on Monday – the hottest day of the season – to 36.5°C on Wednesday, 5.6°C above normal at Santacruz and 0.9°C above normal at Colaba, where it was 34.5°C. Relative humidities at Colaba and Santacruz were 85% and 47% respectively.
Ghatkopar was the hottest on Wednesday, at 38.5°C, followed by Borivli, at 37.9°C.
The air quality index (AQI) for PM2.5 pollutants – was 269 (very poor) on Wednesday morning. On Monday, the city recorded its worst air quality since Jan 2019, at 281 (very poor). Navi Mumbai was the most-polluted location, recording an AQI of 387 (very poor), followed by Malad at 310, Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) at 320 (very poor) and Worli at 307 (very poor). On Thursday also, the AQI is expected to be a 'poor' 262.
Project director of SAFAR, Gufran Beig said, “The winds are very calm, causing accumulation of local emissions, resulting in higher pollution levels.” A thorough look at last year’s AQI figures reveals that the most highly polluted time of the month was January. But now, it seems as though pollutants are in the atmosphere well into February and March.”