Green ministry allocates ₹6.87 crore to tackle air pollution in Chandigarh
This comes in the backdrop of the CPCC and the Chandigarh’s municipal corporation chalking out a plan to improve air quality, which has shown high concentration of particulate matter over the years.
The Union ministry of environment, forest, and climate change has allocated a budget of ₹6.87 crore to Chandigarh Pollution Control Committee (CPCC) to address the city’s air pollution.
This comes in the backdrop of the CPCC and the city’s municipal corporation chalking out a plan to improve air quality, which has shown high concentration of particulate matter over the years.
Speaking on the issue in the Lok Sabha, the minister of state Ashwini Kumar Choubey on Friday said the ministry has launched a National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) aimed at addressing air pollution in a time-bound manner.
The programme includes the implementation of Clean Air Action Plans at the national, state and city levels for source-specific mitigation. Furthermore, a Comprehensive Environmental Pollution Index (CEPI) methodology has been developed to categorise industrial areas into critically-polluted and severely-polluted areas.
As per the norm, CPCC will transfer the funds to the municipal corporation for carrying out measures to control air pollution.
Speaking of the latest development, municipal commissioner Anindita Mitra said, “We have received some funds from CPCC, and we have already floated tenders to buy anti-smog guns, enhance greenery and paving in some areas where pollution is more, install closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras at dumping sites, and buy automatic sweeping machines. All the work will be completed before October this year as tenders have already been floated for the same.”
CPCC, meanwhile, has also invited bids to carry out a study on source apportionment, emission inventory, and carrying capacity related to pollution levels and sources within the union territory (UT) as part of NCAP. The study is expected to be completed within 18 months from the commencement of the work.
Additionally, taking a significant step towards becoming carbon neutral by 2030, the committee is conducting another study to analyse the increase in pollution levels within the city. Based on the study’s findings, appropriate measures will be taken to mitigate pollution.
Being a landlocked city, Chandigarh has the highest density of vehicles in India, with more than two vehicles per capita household. Unsurprisingly, previous studies have indicated that vehicular pollution is the primary contributor to the city’s poor air quality.
Other major sources of air pollution in Chandigarh include roadside dust, burning of dry leaves, litter from trees and gardens, the operation of generator sets in certain areas adjacent to the city, and stubble burning in neighbouring areas during specific seasons of the year.