Millennium Post

Three different agencies, three different plans to tackle pollution

NEW DELHI: The Delhi government is still in the dark as to which plan it should follow to curb pollution, as different authorised bodies have come up with three different plans to curb the city pollution.
Amid the different plans and the confusion regarding its implementations, the air quality of Delhi stayed "very poor" on Thursday.
The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) on Thursday showed air quality index (AQI) at 380, with a value above 400 considered 'severe'.
Until Tuesday, there was only one Graded Action Response Plan (GRAP), formulated by the Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA).
However, the CPCB and later the National Green Tribunal (NGT) published their own separate action plans.
The NGT said in its order there was no uniformity and "unanimity" in action plans of the CPCB and EPCA and the air-quality categorisation needs "clarity and certainty".
The tribunal said there was "no dearth of laws, guidelines and directions in relation to prevention and control of pollution of the ambient air quality in Delhi. What is required is the implementation of laws and directions."
The NGT divided air pollution into four categories, namely I (average), II (severe), III (critical) and IV (environmental emergency).
Meanwhile, a high-level task force, headed by Nripendra Misra, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, has finalised an "Air Action Plan - Abatement of Air Pollution in Delhi-NCR", which has 12 major actionable points. It underlines the need for "sustained and coordinated action" by ministries of the relevant states and the Centre.
However, the Delhi government is unsure which plan to follow during emergency. "We did not get any order from anyone to which one to follow," said a Delhi government official.
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