Greenpeace RTI query reveals that Action Plan Prepared by seven of the non-attainment cities in Maharashtra have been returned by CPCB and ten cities have not yet submitted any Action Plan to reduce Air Pollution to CPCB
Mumbai 23rd August 2018| A Right to Information query has highlighted the immediate need for Maharashtra to step up its efforts for combating air pollution on National Clean Air Programme (NCAP). Maharashtra is home to 25 cities with alarmingly high levels of air pollution above permissible annual levels for PM10 based on 2015 and 2016 data, which is equivalent to all cities with ambient air quality monitoring in the state. Out of these 25 cities 17 have been identified as Non-attainment cities by CPCB in 2016. These cities, technically known as ‘non-attainment cities’ still do not have any action plan in place to tackle air pollution.
Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) records as on 20th August 2018 mentions even though seven out of the 17 cities in Maharashtra had submitted their action plans. These plans have been asked to revise and subsequently re submit. Additionally, the rest of the 10 cities are yet to submit their plans.
Sunil Dahiya, Senior Campaigner, Greenpeace India said “Despite Maharashtra having the highest number of non-attainment cities, lack of even one implementable action plan raises grave concerns towards the government’s preparedness to mitigate air pollution crisis and fight the health emergency the state faces due to hazardous air pollution levels.”
Adding on further Dahiya said, “Delays by the central government in announcing a comprehensive NCAP with time bound targets is also another concern towards providing the support necessary resources for state government to come up with plans in timely manner.”
Records from 2017 suggest, that the actions plan which have been submitted by various cities are merely responses to CPCB directions sent out to Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) in July 2016 which need a scientific approach to identify polluting sectors; and include time bound targets for real air quality improvements in the state.
Earlier in April, the Union Environment Ministry had released its draft National Clean Air Plan (NCAP) to mitigate air pollution. According to the recent media report NCAP was expected to be announced by the Union Government before the 72 Independence day, However, the plan is yet to see the light of day. Maharashtra witnessed high pollution days during last winter, with air quality levels reaching as high as Beijing. It is crucial that the NCAP is announced soon. To make this happen, the central and state governments have to coordinate seamlessly and collectively come-up with national as well as regional/statewide time/sector bound pollution reduction targets.
“City level action plans will play a vital role in fighting the battle against air pollution and formulating them on a strict deadline before we are engulfed by yet another season of hazardous air pollution; these plans are the urgent need of the hour”, concludes Dahiya.
|NCAP Progress Check: Status of City-wise Action Plans for Maharashtra with CPCB|
|Action Plan Not Received||Requested for Revised Action Plan|
|Akola, Chandrapur, Jalgaon, Nagpur, Nashik, Navi Mumbai, Sangli, Solapur, Ulhasnagar||Amaravati, Aurangabad, Jalna, Kolhapur, Latur, Mumbai, Pune|
Notes to Editor-
- Airpocalypse II report (Maharashtra Data & Findings on Page- 14)- https://www.greenpeace.org/archive-india/Global/india/2018/Airpocalypse_II_29Jan18.pdf
For further details-
Madhulika Verma; Senior Media Specialist; Greenpeace India; firstname.lastname@example.org 9971137736
Sunil Dahiya; Senior Campaigner, Greenpeace India; email@example.com; 9013673250