While the cold wave subsides, heavy pollution levels cause aircraft and train delays.
A cold wave that swept across northern India over the weekend has begun to subside, but not before leaving behind a trail of disruption. Heavy pollution levels have caused aircraft and train delays, and schools in the National Capital Region have been ordered to remain shut for the second day in a row.
The cold wave, which was caused by a sudden drop in temperature, led to a sharp increase in the demand for power as people resorted to using heaters and electric blankets to keep warm. This, in turn, led to a spike in air pollution levels as power plants burnt more coal to meet the increased demand.
The situation is unlikely to improve in the coming days as the pollution levels are expected to rise even further due to the burning of crop residue in the states of Punjab and Haryana. The government has urged people to refrain from burning crop residue as it not only leads to air pollution but also contributes to global warming.
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