Air pollution in Delhi-NCR will be tackled in holistic manner: Harsh Vardhan

NetIndian News Network

New Delhi, December 13, 2017

Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Harsh Vardhan has expressed confidence that air pollution in the Delhi-National Capital Region (NCR) region will be tackled in a holistic manner next year. 
Chairing a meeting on the issue of tackling air pollution here yesterday, Dr Harsh Vardhan reiterated that the practice of holding regular meetings with the Ministers of National Capital Region (NCR), to ensure that all the activities on the ground are monitored closely, would be continued.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that all sources that had been identified would be tackled to ensure that mitigation of air pollution is done effectively in Delhi. He added that the Government of Delhi would work closely with all agencies in tackling pollution.
The meeting noted that the air quality in 2017 was better than the air quality in 2016. The number of good, moderate and satisfactory days in 2017 was 151, whereas the same was 109 days in 2016. Similarly, the number of very poor, poor and severe days in 2017 are 181, as compared to 214 days in 2016.
Some of the decisions taken at the meeting include strict measures to be taken for controlling dust pollution. Dust from major construction sites will be monitored closely and any violation will be dealt with strictly.
Mechanized sweeping will be taken up on a large scale. All possible assistance will be provided to the MCDs by the Central Government for increasing the scope of mechanized sweeping.
Fire from municipal solid waste dump sites will be tackled in an urgent manner.  Innovative approaches, in consultation with Department of Science and Technology, will be adopted at the earliest to ensure that the issue of pollution is tackled.
It was noted that the Task Force Committee headed by Principal Secretary to Prime Minister is examining the issue of stubble burning. It was further noted that an action plan to address this issue will be ready in the next one month.
It was decided that the decision regarding a ban on petcoke and furnace oil will be strictly enforced in all the NCR states.
Delhi Police will be requested to tackle the issue of traffic congestion and parking in Delhi. All steps will be taken to increase the availability of public transport in the medium term.
The Pollution Control Boards will work in a proactive manner to ensure that violators are dealt with strictly.  They will also ensure that awareness is created among the people. It was also decided that IEC activities to increase awareness and seeking cooperation from the general public will be taken up in a big way.
A special “Anti Pollution Drive” will be launched in January 2018 for 15 days, wherein there will be concerted action to tackle the issue of air pollution by all the agencies. 
Close interaction will be maintained with Science and Technology institutions to use innovative technologies available to tackle air pollution.
The meeting was also attended by ministers and officials from Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Rajasthan.