The minimum temperature in Delhi dropped to 6.9 degrees Celsius on Sunday, the lowest in November in 17 years, while a cold wave swept the city, according to the Meteorological Department of India, PTI reported.
The last time it was cold in November was in 2003, when the city recorded a minimum of 6.1 degrees Celsius. With this, Delhi set its record on Friday, when the Capital recorded a minimum of 7.5 degrees Celsius, the lowest in the month at 14 years. The all-time record for the lowest minimum temperature in November is 3.9 degrees Celsius, recorded on November 28, 1938
The Safdarjung Observatory, which provides representative data for the city, recorded a minimum of 6.9 degrees Celsius, said Kuldeep Srivastava, head of the regional IMDs forecasting center. Mercury fell to 6.1 degrees Celsius at the Palam weather station.
For the fields, IMD declares a cold wave when the minimum temperature is 10 degrees Celsius or below and is 4.5 levels below normal temperature for two consecutive days. However, for small areas like Delhi, a cold wave can be declared if the criteria are met for another day, Srivastava said.
He added that the icy cold winds blowing from the snow-capped western Himalayas have led to a dip in the mercury. However, the minimum temperature will rise by two to three degrees Celsius in the next four to five days under the influence of a new western concern, the IMD official said.
But why is it so cold?
Winter in Delhi this year has broken several records. October was the coldest month in 58 years, with the minimum temperature dropping to 17.2 degrees Celsius, the lowest since 1962, when it was 16.9 degrees Celsius.
I said Srivastava Times Hindustan that both maximum and minimum temperatures are likely to stay around two degrees at 2.5 degrees Celsius below normal all this season.
Also, since winter is set early with temperatures already low, the minimum is likely to drop to five to six degrees Celsius by Dec. 10, he added. To put things in perspective, this usually happens after December 20th, he said.
Experts said the Capital is experiencing a harsher and longer winter period this year due to a Pacific Ocean weather phenomenon known as La Nina, which leads to a cascading impact on global weather in the winter months.
During La Nina, temperatures in the central Pacific Ocean fall below normal levels, causing wind patterns that can affect the weather in remote regions. When global conditions like La Nina are prevalent, there is a tendency for regions under northwestern India to become colder, VK Soni of the IMDs environmental monitoring research center told the newspaper.
Soni added that currently immersion in mercury is accompanied by strong winds that help remove contaminants. But after November 23, the wind speed is likely to decrease. That would lead to a deterioration in air quality, he said.
Delhi air quality index at 12 a.m. Sunday it was recorded at 264 in the weak category, data from the Central Pollution Control Board showed. According to SAFAR, which provides real-time updates. The total AQI was recorded at 259.
Local factors have also contributed to making the days in Delhi colder. Delhi has had a cloudless line, with only one western disturbance so far bringing some moisture, Srivastava explained. When there is no cloud, the soil cools faster and the minimum temperatures stay low.