The Centre as sent alarming bells to Delhi state government nad neighbouring three states — Rajasthan, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh — to bring down air pollution from “Visibly pollluting vehicles” which are licensed for purchase without concern for climate change.
Some of the steps the Centre has advised the states include action against “visibly polluting vehicles”, mechanised sweeping of roads, creation of green buffers on highways and effective disposal of construction debris to control dust.
Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar has issued directions under the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act and urged these states to put in place mechanized sweeping of roads to control dust, sprinkling of water and putting up of curtains to control air pollution from construction activities.
“We have issued specific directions. There has to be immediate action on visibly polluting vehicles, check the over-loaded transport vehicles as it causes pollution, weighing machines should be immediately installed at the entry points, no parking on non-designated areas should be allowed, stringent action against bio-mass burning, immediate stoppage of unauthorised brick kilns,” Javadekar said.
Javadekar said new waste management rules will be notified next month but before that, the Centre is putting certain restrictions through this directions that water should be sprinkled over dust so that the particles are reduced and vehicles carrying construction materials and debris will be covered. “All these restriction will be in force from today,” Javadekar said.
Other pollution reduction steps include prevention of parking of vehicles in non-designated areas, introduction of early alarm system for commuters about traffic congestion on major routes for diversion, introduction of plan for flexible or staggered timings to minimise peak movement of vehicles on the road and taking steps to retrofit diesel vehicles.
The minister said states should also create green buffers along traffic corridors. Delhi has mooted odd-even schedule of cars hitting the roads from January 1, 2016 but the neighbouring states of Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Haryana are still not contemplating any restrictions on vehicles.