Govt advances BS-VI fuel roll out in Delhi to April 2018
New Delhi: The government on Wednesday preponed introduction of ultra-clean Euro-VI grade petrol and diesel in the national capital by two years to April 2018 to help fight air pollution that has reached alarming levels.
India in 2015 decided to leapfrog straight to Euro-VI emission norm compliant petrol and diesel from April 2020 from current Euro-IV grade.
While the deadline for the rest of the country stands, for the national capital, which is among the most polluted cities in the world, the deadline for introduction of BS-VI - equivalent to Euro-VI grade, has been preponed to April 2018, the Petroleum Ministry said in a statement.
A couple of new refineries are already capable of producing Euro-VI grade fuel, which contains ten parts per million (ppm) of sulphur as against 50 ppm in Euro-IV fuels.
Delhi consumed 906,000 tons of petrol and 1.26 million tonnes of diesel in 2016-17 and to meet that requirement from April next year would not be a problem.
"Taking into account the serious pollution levels in Delhi and adjoining areas, Petroleum Ministry in consultation with public sector oil marketing companies has decided for preponement of BS-VI grade auto fuels in the national capital territory of Delhi with effect from April 1, 2018, instead of April 1, 2020," it said.
Fuel retailers have also been asked to examine the possibility of the introduction of BS-VI auto fuels in the whole of national capital regions, which also includes neighbouring cities of Ghaziabad, Noida, Gurgaon and Faridabad, from April 1, 2019.
In a Twitter post, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said "the decision to prepone the introduction of BS-VI grade fuel in NCT of Delhi w.e.f. 1st April 2018 in place of 1st April 2020 as a sincere effort to curb the vehicular pollution in Delhi and adjoining areas."
The introduction of Euro-VI grade fuel is expected to help mitigate the problem of air pollution in NCT of Delhi and surrounding areas, the statement said.
Fuel meeting BS-IV or Euro-IV emission norm was introduced across the country from April 1, 2017.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his Haryana counterpart Manohar Lal Khattar on Wednesday resolved to put in "sustained efforts" to check pollution and discussed measures to ensure smog does not envelop the national capital in the winter of 2018.
Kejriwal held a nearly 90-minute meeting at Khattar's residence here, and it primarily centred around air pollution and stubble burning that is a major contributory factor to smog, which has engulfed the national capital and parts of Haryana and Punjab over the past nearly two weeks.
A joint statement was issued after the meeting, in which their environment ministers and other top officials also participated. P13