: The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) has welcomed the move of the Union Ministry of Transport to bring forward implementation of Bharat Stage V and Bharat Stage VI emissions standards to 2019 and 2021 respectively.
But it also warned of the dangers of delaying immediate nation-wide extension of Bharat Stage IV norms, currently in force only in a few Indian cities.
“Delhi is battling this problem by discouraging truck entry with environment tax as these are responsible for 30 per cent of the particulate pollution from the transport sector in the city,” noted CSE.
“The strategy to cut highly toxic emissions from the diesel commercial fleet and to nearly equalise petrol and diesel emissions by leapfrogging to Bharat Stage VI emissions standards by 2021 can be compromised if the current baseline emissions from all vehicles are not pushed up to Bharat Stage IV levels nationwide immediately,” said Anumita Roychowdhury, head of CSE’s air pollution team.
Trucks and other diesel vehicles are still at Bharat Stage III emission norms, which are 15 years behind Europe and are contributing heavily to air pollution. The full potential of this action can be realised only after immediate extension of Bharat Stage IV emissions standards to all vehicles. This will reduce highly toxic and cancer-causing diesel particulate emissions by more than 80 per cent and nitrogen oxide by 30 per cent from the new fleet.
Ms. Roychowdhury said, “It is deplorable that the market for Bharat Stage IV compliant trucks and other commercial vehicles has remained a non-starter because of lack of uniform emissions standards in the country. Industry is still selling grossly polluting diesel technology.”
The CSE has also demanded immediately stopping the current practice of maintaining two levels of emissions standards in the country.
Warns that Bharat Stage IV norms have to be enforced nationwide right now for plan to work