National Clean Air Action Plan Is The Need Of The Hour: Greenpeace India

Greenpeace Appreciates The Indian Government's Move Towards Phasing Out Of Aging Coal Power Plants And Also Reinforces Investment In Renewable Energy

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Feature story - May 16, 2016
New Delhi| May 12, 2016| The most recent report by the World Health Organisation (WHO), released today, has re-emphasised the immediate need to address the air pollution menace in several Indian cities such as, Gwalior, Allahabad, Patna and Raipur, along with Delhi.

Responding to the WHO's recent report Greenpeace India has repeatedly called for an urgent, comprehensive National Clean Air Action Plan, with several Greenpeace reports highlighting  the high levels of pollution in Delhi and other cities, and demanding coordinated inter-agency efforts to address air pollution at a national level.  Greenpeace India’s position has been reinforced by the findings of  various research bodies, including IIT Kanpur, the WHO and the government’s own Central Pollution Control Board.

“Pollution does not recognise political boundaries, with polluted air travelling across long distances,” says Sunil Dahiya, campaigner, Greenpeace India, “Air pollution is a national crisis, and demands a concerted national action plan in response.”

The continuing rise of fossil fuel consumption in India, along with several other factors, has contributed to an increase in air pollution levels. The significant increase in secondary particles such as SO2 and NOx in particular contributing to the overall pollution, Dahiya highlighted, can be attributed to emissions from thermal power plants.

“We are glad to see that the government has taken some steps to reduce air pollution: such as  the new emission standards prescribed for thermal power plants and introducing Bharat VI standards for vehicles. The critical thing now is to ensure that these are implemented as soon as possible to reduce the public health crisis due to air pollution coming from burning fossil fuels. Additionally, and perhaps far more importantly considering the many positive impacts on the environment, the government also needs to make a determined switch to cleaner forms of energy. This is the only way to secure a healthy future for generations to come,” concluded Dahiya.