Environment Ministry to Implement GRAP in Delhi NCR; Diesel Generators banned from October 15.

    Stating that the air quality in Delhi NCR has “slipped into the ‘Poor’ category”, the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) has prohibited the utilization of diesel generator sets in the area from October 15.

    The order is valid in Delhi and other NCR towns of Ghaziabad, Noida, Greater Noida, Faridabad and Gurugram.

    Inter alia, the authority has ordered:

    Large construction projects, including highways and metro will provide undertaking to the state pollution control boards/pollution control committees that they’re going to assure adherence to the prescribed norms/guidelines for dust management.

    Industries, predominantly within the Red and Orange category, will deliver an undertaking to the state pollution control boards/pollution control committees that they’re going to use only authorised fuel and can not operate without adequate pollution control measures.

    These dealings have been endorsed for implementation of the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP), which was approved by the Supreme Court in the year 2016 in MC Mehta v. Union of India, and implemented by the Environment Ministry in January 2017.

    GRAP was articulated by EPAC, in discussion with the State Governments and filed experts. It is a model decide to control plummeting air quality and is implemented as an “emergency measure”.

    It demands schedules to be taken at various levels of AQI, staring namely, Moderate & Poor, Very Poor, and Severe as per National Air Quality Index. A new category of “Severe+ or Emergency”.The aforesaid measure postulated by the EPAC vide order dated October 8, are in addition to the following directions, which already in force:

    Ensure implementation and full compliance of the plan on the identified pollution Hot-Spots through ground-level surveillance; night patrolling so on ensure zero-tolerance for all sources of pollution, including waste burning and dust.

    Ensure long-term solutions to the growing problem of solid waste dumping, which is of particular concern because of scattered fires that greatly contribute to air pollution.

    Direct mechanical sweeping machines for normal cleaning of roads/streets in shifts both day and night where available. Sprinkle water and take other necessary measures to regulate dust from roads.

    Closing of power plants in NCR, which don’t obey to the 2017 emission norms; restraints on private transport through measures as listed in GRAP to reinforce parking fees, augment public transport etc,  ban on construction activity, ban on industry not using PNG as fuel and other such measures.