Delhi

AAP govt. for 3-level action plan to curb air pollution

Environment Minister Gopal Rai on Thursday said the government will come up with three-level action plan — five-year plan, one-year plan and winter plan — to fight air pollution in the city.

The Minister said that suggestions have come from a conference held on Thursday on air pollution. It included a joint inter-State committee of implementing agencies and allowing outdoor construction only till October and indoor construction from October every year, among others.

The government also plans to come up with a 20-point list of actions residents can take to reduce air pollution, turning the efforts into a mass movement.

The Environment Department will take a call after submitting a report on the suggestions to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal next week.

40 monitoring stations

Mr. Rai said that suggestions have come that public and contractors should be made aware that outdoor construction should be done only till October and all indoor works should be done during winter, so that we need not ban construction. “This is a new suggestion and we will discuss about it,” he said. Mr. Rai said that last year, the government had prepared an action plan for the 13 air pollution hotspots, but experts have now suggested that 40 monitoring stations should get such an action plan.

“We also plan to analyse all the current action plans and then go forward with a new action plan by combining them,” Mr. Rai said.

Explaining the need for a new action plan, the Minister said, “For controlling pollution, all construction activities were stopped last winter. But many roads were already dug up and it led to more dust pollution. So we need to understand the practicality of the the current action plans.”

On Thursday, Mr. Rai chaired a conference with experts from different institutes, including IIT-Delhi and IIT-Kanpur. Mr. Rai also said that the participants of the conference will be given another 30 minutes each for one-on-one sessions to go into the details of the plans.

An aim to reduce air pollution to 1/3rd of the present level, in the course of next five years, was part of the 10-point ‘Kejriwal ka Guarantee Card’ released by the Chief Minister in the run-up to the 2020 Delhi Assembly elections. “The experts said that as per airshed, there should be a regional-level joint action committee. Then only we can bring a qualitative change,” he said.

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Printable version | Sep 30, 2020 9:24:09 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/aap-govt-for-3-level-action-plan-to-curb-air-pollution/article30937187.ece

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