A new roadmap has been prescribed for the introduction of higher emission standards with the Centre proposing to implement the Euro IV norms across all north Indian states by April this year.
At present the Euro IV norms are applicable in 13 major cities including Delhi and the NCR. By April 1, 2015 all private cars in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Rajasthan would have to be Euro IV compliant.
In an affidavit filed before the Supreme Court, the ministry of environment and forest referred to a communication by the ministry of petroleum and natural gas (MoP&NG) stating Euro IV emission norms would be extended to the entire country by April 1, 2017.
Within a year of northern states adopting Euro IV, the same shall be made mandatory in Goa, Kerala, Karnataka, Telangana, Odisha, Daman & Diu, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Andaman & Nicobar Islands. Parts of Maharashtra and Gujarat would also be covered by April 1, 2016 and by April 2017, Euro IV would be made mandatory in the entire country.
Emission standards are instituted to regulate the output of air pollutants from vehicles. The standards, based on European regulations, were first introduced in 2000 and Euro IV norms have been in place since April 2010.
The affidavit, filed in response to a court direction, further informed the SC that the government is also considering switching over directly to Euro VI by April 2020 instead of a step-wise upgradation.
The special forest bench headed by Chief Justice HL Dattu had in November 2014 sought the Centre’s response on senior advocate Harish Salve’s submission that the government must act urgently on “second generation reforms” to curb pollution. Salve is assisting the bench.