In the latest attempt to improve air quality in Delhi, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) issued directions to the state governments of Delhi, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan to immediately begin taking action.
- The CPCB, invoking its powers under the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act of 1981, has specified a total of 42 ‘action points’ that these governments need to initiate in order to check pollution from vehicles, crop burning, industrial emissions and construction activities.
- Many of these plans have to be acted upon with immediate effect. For others, timelines of 30 days, 60 days or 90 days have been specified.
‘Action Points’ by CPCB:
- The states have been asked to launch an extensive awareness drive against polluting vehicles,
- install weigh-in motion bridges at all entry points in Delhi,
- prevent parking of vehicles in non-parking areas,
- prevent overloading of vehicles,
- prepare action plan to check fuel adulteration,
- prepare action plan for public transport on CNG mode,
- maintain pot hole free roads for free flow of traffic,
- introduce early alarm system for traffic congestion on major routes and for route diversions,
- decongest pathways, and even consider flexible or staggered timings to decongest the roads.
- Ensure construction sites are covered,
- construction material and waste that can result in dust are handled only after sprinkling water on them,
- these material and waste must also be carried only in closed carriages.
- The states have been given 30 days to take “strict action” against unauthorised brick kilns, and 60 days to ensure “strict action” against industrial units not complying with pollution standards.
- Stringent action against open burning of biomass/leaves/tyres,
- prohibit use of coal in hotels, restaurants and eliminate use of kerosene for cooking in Delhi.
- Set up helpline for taking action against non-compliance.