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CSE gives a guarded welcome of NGT order on air pollution

BS Reporter 

The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) welcomed the National Green Tribunal's judgement to ban more than 15-year-old vehicles from Delhi roads with some circumspection. In a release, reacting to the NGT's order on Wednesday, CSE said, it "welcomed the 14-point action agenda directed by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) to clean up the air of Delhi." But it appealed for more stringent measures to bring down the severe peak pollution levels in Delhi.

It noted that some of the measures ordered by the NGT were already part of the Delhi government's regulations, such as the ban on vehicles older than 15 years. It hoped the NGT order would help implement the orders better. It also warned that the steps ordered by the green tribunal may not be enough to check increasing pollution levels in the capital.

Anumita Roychowdhury, executive director-research and advocacy, CSE said, "While this is a step forward in right direction, a periodic assessment of the effectiveness of the action plan is needed to ensure peak pollution levels during winter are brought down and the clean air target is met. That may require additional and more stringent measures. The ambit of the action plan should also be expanded to the entire national capital region (NCR) of Delhi for effective impact."

CSE added that not just very old vehicles but others too were adding to the pollution load. She also warned that some of the NGT directions may actually boomerang. "Some of the proposed measures may have unintended consequences and may even defeat the purpose pollution reduction. For instance, the proposed ban on parking on motorised carriageway to cut congestion without additional safeguards and riders can increase parking pressure on footpaths and cycle tracks," read the organisation's release.

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First Published: Fri, November 28 2014. 00:06 IST