By March 15, all industrial units in Delhi will switch to PNG: Govt tells EPCA
By March 15, all industrial units operating in Delhi will have to switch to piped natural gas (PNG) from any other fuel source they are currently using, the Delhi environment department has told the Supreme Court-mandated Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA). Units that fail to comply with the order will be shut down.
In a recent meeting to review the Graded Response Action Plan to fight pollution in the city, Delhi government officials said this will end the problem of other unapproved fuel — as notified by Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) in 1996 — in the city.
“We have already given directions that all industries in the city must either convert to PNG or we will shut them down. Many people have already started the process. We have sent letter to 700 units and 100 more are being sent,” an environment department official said in the meeting.
“In some areas like Mandawali there is a problem in terms of gas lines. We have met IGL on this and asked them to let us know if they need any kind of help in terms of subsidy. We will give them whatever they need for this transition,” the official added.
EPCA lauded the initiative and called it an example that other NCR states to follow.
“Even you should try and do this in your states,” EPCA member Sunita Narain told representatives of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan present at the meeting.
Earlier, in a meeting with Lieutenant-Governor Anil Baijal on December 7, EPCA chairman Bhure Lal had raised the issue of industries running in Badli, Bawana, Narela and DTU areas causing air pollution.
These industrial areas use non-approved fuels for running their machines and are burning garbage. There are approximately 10,000 rubber units operating and need to be checked, he had informed.
In 1996, the Delhi Pollution Control Committee issued a notification mandating the ‘acceptable fuels’ that could be used in Delhi. This notification was issued under section 19 of Air Act. The list did not include furnace oil or pet coke or other fuels that could have high Sulphur. In 1996, it specified that coal with low Sulphur (4000 ppm) could be used in Delhi and also termed fuel oil with 18,000 ppm of Sulphur as low-Sulphur.
Generators on PNG
In the EPCA meeting, it was also suggested that generators should be allowed to run if they use gas as fuel.
“The proposal was made (by Delhi government). In principle, EPCA is in its favour. Let us call a meeting to discuss which are these generators that can run on gas and how will we distinguish between gas and diesel-run ones,” Sunita Narain said.
Ahead of Diwali, EPCA had started implementing “very poor” and “severe” categories of its Graded Response Action Plan — which includes more strict measures including the diesel generator ban — to curb air pollution in Delhi and adjoining areas.
The accused, Ashu, a resident of Panipat’s Nara village, killed the victims, reportedly his friends, between 8pm and 4am and travelled around 60km from the first crime scene in Matlauda of Panipat to Titawi in Uttar Pradesh’s Shamli. The victims are Sonu, 26, who was working with a private contractor in a cement factory, and his two friends -- Monu, 25, of Nara village and Rakesh, 27, of Bhalsi village.
The Delhi government introduced the Happiness curriculum in 2018, Entrepreneurship mindset curriculum in 2019 and the Deshbhakti curriculum last year with the aim of inculcating problem-solving approaches among students and making them more self-aware, self-confident and socially responsible.
While the LG appreciated the work done at Indraprastha and Pul Prahladpur, he was displeased at the drainage system at Minto Bridge, flagging “technical flaws” in the drainage system and warned that engineers concerned “will be held responsible and strict action will be taken in the event of waterlogging at the site.”
BJP leader Sudhir Mungantiwar said the MLAs were informed about the election process for upcoming election for Speaker’s post. “They were told that the election will be held through a voice vote or they may have to stand up to vote for their candidate if asked,” said Mungantiwar.
The weather department classifies rainfall between ‘trace’ and 2.4 mm as ‘very light rainfall’, as ‘light rainfall’ when it is between 2.5 mm and 15.5 mm, as ‘moderate’ rainfall when it is between 15.6 mm and 64.4 mm and as ‘heavy’ when it is over 64.5 mm in a single day.