NEW DELHI: There has been a 30 per cent reduction in stubble burning in the National Capital Region, a major cause for air pollution, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said today.
"Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has set up a control room to enable people to register complaints against cases of biomass burning. 84 such complaints had been received in the last three months and necessary action has been taken on them," he said.
The minister, who chaired the fifth meeting of the Environment Ministers of National Capital Region (NCR) on mitigation of air pollution here, reiterated the importance of holding awareness and training camps for 7,000 sweepers so that biomass burning can be reduced.
Javadekar also urged the Environment Ministers of NCR to strictly follow the directions issued by CPCB under Section 18 (1) of Air Act, 1981.
He suggested quick implementation of the revamped Waste Management Rules, including the newly formulated Construction and Demolition Waste Management Rules to reduce air pollution.
The Minister said that there has been a 30 per cent reduction in stubble burning and that the states of Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan have banned stubble burning.
"Pollution due to dust, emissions from industries, burning of biomass and vehicular pollution are among the major causes of air pollution. Pollution from unauthorised brick kilns must be reduced as well," he said.
The Union Minister said the government has decided to implement Bharat-6 compliance for vehicles by 2020, which will significantly reduce vehicular pollution.
The need to install vapour recovery equipment at petrol pumps was also emphasized at the meeting.
The ministers and representatives from state governments outlined the steps that have been taken to mitigate air pollution in their respective regions.
Delhi Environment Minister Imran Hussain said that since last year, 480 polluting vehicles have been fined while the number of PUC centres increased from 702 to 828 in the national capital.
The time of entry of commercial vehicles into Delhi has been rescheduled from 9.30 pm to 11pm and efforts are being made to strictly enforce the new timing, he said.
Delhi government has also started online monitoring of power plants and waste-to-energy plants along with setting up compost units in 346 parks in the city, he added.
Uttar Pradesh Environment Minister Abhishek Mishra said the construction of underpasses has been started and two elevated roads were being constructed while work on widening of NH-24 is underway.
Rajasthan Minister Raj Kumar Rinwa said that the state government has taken strict action against polluting vehicles.
A representative from Haryana said the state has issued directions to all local bodies on strict compliance of directives issues by Environment Ministry.