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  • 24 October, 2019

  • Min Read

National Ambient Air Quality Standards, Air Quality Index , SAFAR

National Air Quality Index’ (AQI):

Was launched in 2014 to disseminate information on air quality

Initiative under Swachh Bharat Mission

The measurement of air quality is based on eight pollutants

AQI has six categories of air quality. These are: Good, Satisfactory, Moderately Polluted, Poor, Very Poor and Severe.

AQI is considered as ‘One Number- One Colour-One Description’ for the common man to judge the air quality within his vicinity.

8 pollutants measured by AQI :

1.Particulate Matter (size less than 10 µm) or (PM10),

2.Particulate Matter (size less than 2.5 µm) or (PM2.5),

3.Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2),

4.Sulphur Dioxide (SO2),

5.Carbon Monoxide (CO),

6.Ozone (O3),

7.Ammonia (NH3), and

8.Lead (Pb)

National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS):

National Ambient Air Quality Standards are the standards for ambient air quality set by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB)

The CPCB has been conferred this power by the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981.

Ambient Air Quality Standards contains 12 pollutants (8 pollutants contained in AQI and 4 others given below)

Benzo(a)Pyrene (BaP)

System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR) :

Initiative introduced by the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) to measure the air quality of a metropolitan city

Indigenously developed by the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), Pune and is operationalized by the India Meteorological Department (IMD).

It gives out real-time air quality index on a 24×7 basis with color-coding (along with 72 hours advance forecast).

SAFAR is an integral part of India’s first Air Quality Early Warning System operational in Delhi.


increase awareness among the general public regarding the air quality in their city

helps the policy-makers to develop appropriate mitigation measures and systematic actions

Pollutants monitored by SAFAR:




Carbon Monoxide (CO)

Nitrogen Oxides (NOx)

Sulfur Dioxide (SO2)






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