Delhi Braces for Rising Temperatures and Potential Relief from Dust Storm

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Delhi, India’s capital city, is experiencing scorching temperatures as the summer season intensifies. Kuldeep Srivastava, the Head of the Indian Meteorological Department’s regional weather forecasting Centre in Delhi, has declared that the current heatwave is the highest recorded this season so far. The MeT office predicts similar conditions for Saturday, with heatwave conditions expected at isolated places.However, there may be a temporary respite for Delhites in the form of a duststorm and cloudy sky due to a fresh western disturbance.

The Safdardunj observatory, Delhi’s primary weather station, reported a maximum temperature of 42.5 degrees Celsius, which is three notches above the normal range. Najafgarh recorded the highest temperature in the national capital at 44.1 degrees Celsius, while other areas such as Pusa, Jafarpur, and Pitampura reached temperatures of 43, 43.1, and 43.1 degrees Celsius, respectively. Throughout the day, the sky remained clear, and the minimum temperature settled six notches below normal at 19.3 degrees Celsius.Humidity levels fluctuated between 77 percent and 18 percent. The weather office has forecasted a partly cloudy sky for Saturday, with a possibility of a dust storm in the evening and night. The maximum and minimum temperatures are expected to be around 43 and 20 degrees Celsius, respectively.Delhi’s air quality index (AQI) stood at 227, categorizing it as ‘poor.’ An AQI between zero and 50 is considered ‘good,’ 51 and 100 ‘satisfactory,’ 101 and 200 ‘moderate,’ 201 and 300 ‘poor,’ and 301 and 400 ‘very poor.’ The city experienced an unusual spell of cloudy weather and sporadic rainfall from April 21 to May 7, a departure from the norm for this time of year.

Officials attribute this unusual weather pattern to consecutive western disturbances originating from the Mediterranean region, resulting in unseasonal rainfall in northwest India. While Delhi has not experienced any heatwave days during this period, it is challenging to establish a direct link to climate change without sufficient data.Delhi’s weather continues to surprise, as last week witnessed an uncommon episode of dense fog and the third coldest May morning since weather records began in 1901. In 2022, Delhi endured its second hottest April since 1951, with a monthly average maximum temperature of 40.2 degrees Celsius.

The city observed nine heatwave days in April, including four within the first 10 days, marking the highest count for the month since 2010.As Delhites brace themselves for warmer days ahead, they may find temporary relief in the forecasted duststorm and cloudy sky associated with the fresh western disturbance.

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