Form patrols to spot waste burning: EPCA

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NEW DELHI: As the air quality is expected to start deteriorating soon, EPCA, in a meeting on Tuesday, has asked Delhi and its neighbouring states to form patrolling parties to report instances of waste burning, crop burning or building waste violations.

The authority has asked states to submit daily reports from October 15 to March 15. “We must not let the air quality deteriorate during this period. It should not escalate any further and all measures under the graded action plan need to be put in place,” said an EPCA member.

Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) also expressed displeasure over the lack of action on the ground, citing recent instances of waste burning at Barapullah and behind Jaypee Hospital in Noida. “All these pictures of waste burning are regularly emerging. All of you should form patrolling parties for different areas and if something happens in their area, they will be held responsible,” said Bhure Lal, EPCA chairman.

Haryana and Uttar Pradesh were both asked about the measures being taken and their preparedness against crop burning in particular, and were told that if the situation reached the ’emergency’ category, no one would be spared.

Haryana was told to keep a tab on crop fires in Kurukshetra, Karnal and Kaithal and to take the help of private companies, who could help provide alternatives to crop burning. “We are currently doing satellite monitoring and teams are immediately sent on the ground in case a fire is noticed,” said a Haryana representative.

EPCA also instructed a crackdown on illegal firecracker units operating in UP and Haryana, asking the states to ensure no firecrackers were brought into Delhi NCR from outside. “The Supreme Court order on firecrackers will help in reducing the load, but you need to crack down on illegal firecracker units and ensure they are not brought in from border states. Police should be alerted,” said an EPCA member.

Delhi will have 17 to 18 monitoring stations by October 15 with five new stations to become functional by the end of this month. NCR will have 50 new stations by December with 20 in Delhi, 13 in Haryana and 10 in Uttar Pradesh, among others. EPCA plans to use this data to formulate a single air quality index for NCR.

Source:- Times Of India

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