PCMC first in state to implement GRAP to combat air pollution - Hindustan Times
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PCMC first in state to implement GRAP to combat air pollution

ByVicky Pathare
Jan 07, 2024 07:40 PM IST

GRAP is a set of anti-air pollution measures, which will be implemented during the deteriorating air quality. It has been classified into four phases—moderate to poor, very poor, severe and severe+ or emergency

Amidst growing concerns over increasing air pollution, the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) will soon implement a Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) to combat pollution in the twin city of Pimpri Chinchwad.

The civic body in December last year had prepared the GRAP. Later, the GRAP was made available for residents on the PCMC website from December 5 to December 19 for their suggestions and objections. (REPRESENTATIVE PHOTO)
The civic body in December last year had prepared the GRAP. Later, the GRAP was made available for residents on the PCMC website from December 5 to December 19 for their suggestions and objections. (REPRESENTATIVE PHOTO)

The PCMC is the first civic body in the state that has prepared GRAP to combat pollution in its region, said officials.

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The civic body in December last year had prepared the GRAP. Later, the GRAP was made available for residents on the PCMC website from December 5 to December 19 for their suggestions and objections.

Sanjay Kulkarni, head, environment department at PCMC, said, that after the GRAP was prepared the civic body had put it in the public domain for suggestions and objections of the residents.

“The deadline is now over and we have included the suggestions and objections given by the citizens. We are working on the final action plan. The final GRAP in the next couple of weeks which will be put in front of the general body of the civic body for approval. Once it is approved it will be implemented,” he said.

Another senior official of PCMC requesting anonymity, said, the GRAP plan will be implemented in coordination with other departments like Maharashtra Pollution Control Board, Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal Ltd (PMPML), Pune Metro, traffic police and the regional transport office.

“There are several penalties that have been proposed in GRAP for various waste and air quality violations. The penalty amount ranges between 300 and 55,000 based on the violations and repeated offences. This heavy penalty will prevent people from violating the pollution norms,” he said.

What is GRAP

GRAP is a set of anti-air pollution measures, which will be implemented in Pimpri-Chinchwad during the deteriorating air quality. It has been classified into four phases—moderate to poor, very poor, severe and severe+ or emergency.

Based on the AQI the task force at PCMC in consultation with experts will issue necessary orders for implementing measures of the GRAP phase.

During the moderate to poor AQI strict restrictions like stopping the burning of garbage in landfills, dust control in construction activities, restrictions on the plying of obsolete vehicles, traffic synchronization at major corridors, Mechanical sweeping of roads and a complete ban on the use of coal and firewood in eateries, restaurants and hotels amongst multiple others will be enforced.

In the case of phase II ‘moderate and severe’ AQI strict implementation of rules like the closure of RMC plants and polluting units, intensification of public transport, promotion of non-motorized and EV Zone in the city; intensification of Mechanical sweeping and sprinkling of water with dust suppressants on roads.

If the AQI reaches the ‘severe+ or emergency’ (phase IV) of GRAP, the measures and restrictions will include, stopping entry of trucks and heavy vehicles (excluding essential commodities) in the city, stopping construction and demolition activities, shutting schools and work from home for public and private offices in consultation to the state government and vehicle restraint measures or low emission zones.

Based on continuous monitoring of AQI levels for three days, PCMC has the right to either revoke or implement GRAP phases.

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