New Delhi (via The Wire) – Delhi is in the middle of its worst air pollution episode in 20 years, which led for the first time in its history the closing of thousands of schools for more than three days. In December 2016, Delhi proposed the Graded Responsibility Action Plan (GRAP), a series of measures to be implemented under poor, very poor, severe and emergency polluting conditions. This was approved by the Supreme Court, giving the Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) the authority to oversee implementation for the National Capital Region (NCR). The highlights of GRAP:
– For moderate to poor conditions, with concentrations ranging between 61 and 120 μg/m3 for PM2.5 and 101 to 350 μg/m3 for PM10, actions include ensuring strict enforcement of controls on garbage burning, brick kilns, power plants, ash ponds, construction sites, fireworks and periodic wet sweeping of roads; vigilance on polluting vehicles, vehicles touting PUC norms and out of state trucks; deploying more traffic police; and posting information on social media
– For very poor conditions, with concentrations ranging between 121 and 250 μg/m3 for PM2.5 and 351 to 430 μg/m3 for PM10, actions include banning diesel generator sets, increasing parking fees, increasing bus services, stopping coal and wood burning at hotels, opening eateries and stationing guards at markets in residential areas; increasing public awareness
– For severe conditions, with concentrations above 250 μg/m3 for PM2.5 and 430 μg/m3 for PM10, actions include shutting down brick kilns, hot-mix plants, stone crushers, Badarpur power plant, intensifying public transport services and wet-sweeping roads more frequently
– For severe and emergency conditions, with concentrations above 300 μg/m3 for PM2.5 and 500 μg/m3 for PM10 for more than 48 hours, actions include closing entry of non-commodity trucks, closing all construction, introduction of odd-even and additional measures as the authority’s see fit.
Read the full article by Sarath Guttikunda here …