Deepavali impact: Pollution on a high in Chennai due to crackers

Deepavali saw Chennai choking from toxic fumes. The city was smothered in a blanket of dense smog on Wednesday as Chennai recorded one of the highest levels of air pollution across India.

The AQI touched a hazardous 685 in Manali area at 6 am. Meanwhile, at IIT Chennai the AQI reached a unhealthy level of 218.

With smoke and air pollution due to bursting of crackers increasing anywhere between twice and tenfold higher than permissible limits, train traffic was also slowed down during morning hours. The city’s arterial roads also saw fewer vehicles plying till Thursday noon.

In Chennai, which celebrated the festival on Wednesday, pollution levels the following evening inched up to that of Delhi, a city where where smog and pollution touch toxic highs during this season.

Meanwhile, officials of the Environment Department are currently conducting a study to capture the magnitude of the threat posed by the use of plastics in the State. The government is set to decide on tackling the issue soon after the study.

“Our officials are currently involved in a study to find out the extent to which plastics are being used in the State, and the actual damage it will cause to the environment,” Environment Minister K.C. Karuppannan said.