Some lessons for Delhi: How other cities tackle air pollution? | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Some lessons for Delhi: How other cities tackle air pollution?

delhi Updated: Nov 01, 2016 15:21 IST
Soumya Pillai
Pollution in Delhi

A woman covers her face to escape pollution in New Delhi. (Sushil Kumar/HT Photo)

On Tuesday, Delhi was breathing “severely polluted air” yet again. Air quality in many areas in the Capital has remained dangerously low over the last week. Though Diwali has passed, pollution hasn’t.

Finally reacting to the problem, deputy CM Manish Sisodia called a high-level meeting on Tuesday to tackle the situation. Till the Delhi government comes up with an effective plan, here is what other cities across the globe do to combat pollution:


Last November, Paris brought in an emergency traffic ban when pollution level was close to ‘dangerous’. The city’s pollution control plan says the government can implement a traffic ban after three poor air quality days. If pollution is ‘severely high’, the government can call out half the vehicles with no advance warning to citizens.

Mexico City

Mexico issues ‘pollution alerts’ when the levels become worrisome. They result in the reduction of the number of vehicles on the road. Other measures include restricting activities at gas stations and factories, and bans on burning solid and liquid material.


Beijing has emergency plans to curb pollution. This includes ban on fireworks when the city experiences three consecutive days of heavy smog. The city government recently introduced a regulation requiring people buying five or more boxes of fireworks to register with an official ID.


A law prohibits using fireworks between 11pm and 7am though extensions are given for special events. Illegal use of fireworks can be fined with up to £5,000 and/or imprisonment for up to six months. This also includes on the spot fine of £90. During focused ‘idling engine action days’ the City Corporation asks drivers to switch off their engines when parked.

Read: High-level meeting at 1pm to tackle spiking air pollution: Delhi deputy CM