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CAQM Imposes Environmental Compensation Charges & Initiates Prosecution to Abate Air Pollution

By intensifying inspections, issuing closure orders, and promoting compliance with air pollution control regulations, the CAQM and other relevant agencies are working towards creating a healthier environment in NCR.

Shivam Dwivedi
CAQM Imposes Environmental Compensation Charges & Initiates Prosecution to Abate Air Pollution (Photo Source: Pixabay)
CAQM Imposes Environmental Compensation Charges & Initiates Prosecution to Abate Air Pollution (Photo Source: Pixabay)

The Commission for Air Quality Management in NCR and Adjoining Areas (CAQM) has taken proactive steps to implement air pollution control rules and regulations in order to tackle the ongoing problem of air pollution in the National Capital Region (NCR). To step up inspections and guarantee adherence to regulatory directives, a total of 40 flying squad inspection teams have been deployed.

Between January and May of 2023, these flying squads conducted 2,901 surprise inspections and field-level incognito checks across various sites in the NCR. The inspections targeted industrial units, Construction & Demolition (C&D) sites, commercial and residential units using Diesel Generators (DG) sets, as well as air pollution hotspots.

Based on the reports submitted by the flying squads, several closure orders were issued against units found to be grossly violating air pollution control norms. In total, 147 closure orders were issued, with 5 in Delhi, 61 in Haryana (NCR), 60 in Uttar Pradesh (NCR), and 21 in Rajasthan (NCR). These orders were issued to ensure that the violators adhere to the regulations and take appropriate measures to mitigate the pollution.

Furthermore, during the same period, 51 industrial units were issued closure directions for using unapproved fuels. Among these units, only 8 were found to be using coal, which is a major contributor to air pollution. This highlights the need for stricter enforcement and monitoring of fuel usage in industrial settings.

To encourage compliance and ensure the improvement of air quality, the CAQM has also issued resumption orders for 201 units/entities where closure directions had previously been issued. These resumptions were granted after the units demonstrated compliance with air pollution control norms, such as obtaining Consent to Operate (CTO) and Consent to Establish (CTE), adhering to emission norms, using approved fuels, and installing pollution control devices. The resumption orders covered 24 sites in Delhi, 75 in Haryana (NCR), 81 in Uttar Pradesh (NCR), and 21 in Rajasthan (NCR).

The CAQM is committed to enforcing its statutory directions and orders to address violations and non-compliance. The Commission has not only ordered the closure of grossly violating units but has also imposed Environmental Compensation Charges (EC) and initiated prosecution in cases of non-compliance. These measures aim to hold accountable those responsible for contributing to the deteriorating air quality in the NCR.

In addition to its enforcement efforts, the CAQM has advised the state implementing agencies, including the State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs) and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC), to ensure strict compliance with the statutory directions issued by the Commission.

This collaborative approach between the central and state authorities is crucial in effectively tackling the air pollution crisis in the NCR.

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