The National Green Tribunal has directed the Centre to submit a report on standards of lead and to phase out lead as stabiliser in polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipes that are commonly used in most buildings.
A bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel expressed concern that the notification has not been finalised despite its direction and directed the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) to submit a report before October 21.
"The report dated May 21 states that the process is still pending. Though the MoEF has approved the draft notification, the same is under submission to the Law Ministry. Let a further report be filed before the next date," the bench said in a recent order.
The green panel in March has directed the Centre to finalise within two months the standards for using lead in PVC pipes.
The tribunal was earlier informed by the Environment Ministry that draft rules were considered on December 13, 2018 and a recommendation was made to issue a draft notification as per the provisions of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
The NGT was earlier informed that water passing through PVC pipes commonly used in most buildings may contain toxic materials like lead, which has a hazardous effect on human health.
The green panel was hearing a plea filed by environment activist Ajay Kumar Singh, seeking the issuance of notification to lay down standards for lead to be used in PVC pipes and to phase out lead as a stabiliser in PVC pipes.
The plea also sought directions for withdrawal of PVC pipes, containing lead-based heat stabiliser, from the market and a ban on the use of such stabilisers.
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