The Centre today issued directions, to all agencies falling under Delhi airshed area, under Section 18 of Air Act, 1981, to control air pollution and improve the Ambient Air Quality in Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR). The directions have been issued to state governments of Delhi, Rajasthan, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.
Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri Prakash Javadekar said that directions to control vehicular emissions include - immediate action against visibly polluting vehicles, carrying out checks of overloaded vehicles, ensuring No Parking in non-designated areas, decongestion of pathways, promoting battery-operated vehicles and considering introduction of flexi/staggered timings to minimize peak movement of vehicles.
The Minister also said that mechanized sweeping of roads will be introduced to control dust on the roads. Shri Javadekar added that to control air pollution from construction and demolition activities, municipal agencies have been asked to undertake water sprinkling and putting up curtains and barriers. He pointed out that to control air pollution arising from biomas burning, the ban on burning of agriculture waste and crop residues will be strictly enforced. “Directions have also been issued to ensure strict action against unauthorized brick kilns in an effort to control air pollution caused by industries”, Shri Javadekar stated.
The following is the text of the directions under Section 18 (1) (b) of the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 regarding prevention, control or abatement of air pollution and improvement of National Ambient Air Quality in Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR) issued here today:
“Whereas, under Section 17 (1) (a) of the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981, one of the functions of the State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs) and Pollution Control Committees (PCCs) is to plan comprehensive programmes for prevention, control or abatement of air pollution and to secure the execution thereof;
Whereas, levels of Particulate Matter (PM10 & PM2.5) exceed the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) 2009 in the National Capital Region (NCR);
Whereas, the primary sources of air pollution in NCR States are: a) vehicular emissions; b) burning of biomass, Crop residues, Municipal Solid Waste and Garbage, c) Road dust; d) Constructions and Demolitions; and g) Industrial emissions, etc;
Whereas, serious concerns have been expressed by Hon’ble Supreme Court, High Court of Delhi and the National Green Tribunal (NGT) in the matter from time to time and specific directions have been issued;
Whereas, there have been regular meetings between Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change (MoEF&CC) with the Government of Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan to evolve and implement short and long-term action plans;
Whereas, the concerned State Governments have agreed to implement identified actions on short and long term basis;
Whereas, clean air is a matter of right and it is necessary to implement steps towards improvement of Air Quality in the National Capital Region;
Whereas, functions of the Central Pollution Control Board under Section 16 of the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 include improvement of quality of air and to prevent, control or abate air pollution in the country;
Whereas, steps are urgently required to improve air quality adopting a multipronged and integrated approach including close monitoring of implementation;
NOW, THEREFORE, in view of the above stated facts, the following directions in exercise of powers under section 18(1) (b) of the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 are hereby issued in order to improve the air quality in Delhi and NCR as per timelines indicated:
Control of Vehicular Emissions:
(B) Control of Road Dust/Re-suspension of dust and other fugitive emission:
(C) Control of Air Pollution from Bio-Mass Burning:
(D) Control of Industrial Air Pollution;
(E) Control of Air Pollution from Construction and Demolition Activities:
(F) Other Steps to control Air Pollution
The State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs) / Pollution Control Committee (PCC) shall acknowledge the receipt of this direction immediately and shall communicate the status of the implementation before 31stJanuary 2016 supplemented with ambient air quality monitoring data being maintained by them. The SPCBs/PCC shall issue further directions to such authorities, as may be necessary, for implementation of these directions by 15th of January, 2016.