Delhi air pollution is majorly caused by local pollutants: UK study

As per a UK study, Delhi’s air pollution is majorly caused by local sources of pollution such as domestic heating, construction and traffic

Created On: Jan 10, 2020 17:49 ISTModified On: Jan 10, 2020 17:50 IST
Delhi Air Pollution

Delhi Pollution: As per a UK study, Delhi’s air pollution is majorly caused by local sources of pollution. The study was conducted by researchers from the University of Surrey in the UK.

The study suggests that local sources of pollution including construction, traffic and domestic heating contribute significantly to the high concentration of harmful air pollutants in the national capital region.

The researchers noted that efforts to control pollution in the city will need to be made throughout the year not just in winters when it reaches the peak, given the dominance of local sources of pollutants.

UK study on Delhi Pollution: Key Highlights

The study noted that around 600,000 deaths in India are due to air pollution and Delhi has some of the world’s highest levels of air pollutants.

The researchers involved in the study mainly analysed how particulate matter including PM2.5 and PM10 and toxic gases such as oxides of nitrogen, sulphur dioxide, carbon monoxide and the ozone impact this region in India.

The researchers found that there have been significantly higher levels of air pollutants in winter months in Delhi, in comparison to summer and monsoon months. The ozone level, however, did not show much change.

The study attributed the high levels of fine particulate matter such as PM2.5 and PM10 in winter months to fumes from stubble burning and increase in biomass burning for residential heating.

The study noted that the weather in the winter months with low wind speed and reduced precipitation may also have a significant role in raising the level of pollutants in the air.

The research team obtained meteorological data from each station for the duration of the study and examined the wind speed and the direction of particulate matter.

The analysis suggested that local sources of pollution such as domestic heating, construction and traffic have a larger influence on the air quality level in the city than regional sources such as air pollution from long-range traffic coming from outside the region.


The study on Delhi Pollution by UK researchers was published in the journal- Sustainable Cities and Society.

The study had gathered four years of pollution data from 12 sites across Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh and then published its findings.

As per the World Health Organisation (WHO), air pollution is estimated to cause almost 4.2 million premature deaths across the world.

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