Vehicle scrappage programs serve multiple purposes like reducing traffic congestion, air pollution, pressure on mines, etc. However, it is also a key tool for economic revival as it has a direct bearing on the automobile sector– a critical determinant of economic growth. Many countries used it in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis to aid their recovery. Recently, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways released the draft Vehicle Scrappage Policy. This could serve as a much needed leg up for the Indian auto industry and post-COVID economy.
The daily news of deteriorating air quality in Indian cities due to industrial pollution has become a regular affair. Recent studies show that industrial pollution in India has risen drastically and has led to a huge loss to the Indian economy in the last few years. Thus, there is an urgent need to understand and address this problem as early as possible and protect the environment from further damage.
After the European Union and the USA spelled their plan for a new green deal, it is important that India incorporates a green program that tries to minimize environmental degradation and provide a more sustainable growth model. The Pandemic is a golden opportunity to consider the idea of Rainbow new Deal put forth by some environmental activists.
As yet another winter convenes, the Delhi air pollution issue once again has come to discussion. The failure of successive years to contain air pollution in Delhi and its relation to the stubble burning practices in adjoining states has been discussed again and again with no proper solution in sight. The AQI in the national capital entered the ‘severe’ category in the first week of November. In this article, we will discuss the issue of stubble burning in Detail.
Recently, The National Green Tribunal (NGT) Completed 10 years of its existence. As a specialist environmental court, it holds a critical place in environmental protection actions in India. It has in the past decade given some important directives, passed environmentally sound judgments. But in recent years, its working has been questioned on many counts. In this article, we will analyze the working of NGT in detail.
Based on the data shared by the Central Pollution Control Board and state pollution control boards of Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) submitted a report to the Supreme Court recently, stating that a rise in COVID 19 cases caused a “drastic increase” in bio-medical waste in these four states.
Poor sanitation is a primary cause of diseases worldwide = improving sanitation can have a beneficial impact on health both in households as well as communities. In order to meet the sanitation need, the government had launched the Swachh Bharat Mission in 2014. Since then, SBM became the world’s largest sanitation program by changing the behaviour of hundreds of millions of people with respect to toilet access and usage. However, there are also concerns regarding the overreporting of data, actual usage of toilets, etc. which we will discuss in this article.
Recently, the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority – EPCA had declared a public health emergency in the Delhi-NCR region as the pollution levels crossed the threshold of the “severe-plus” category. The air pollution is said to reach “Severe plus” or emergency levels when PM2.5 levels cross 300 µg/m3 or PM10 levels crosses 500µg/m3. As per the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP), these levels, which are about 5-times the standard, need to persist for 48 hours or more before the emergency level can be declared. This is worrisome because, according to the plan, during severe or emergency levels of air pollution, those suffering from heart diseases, asthma and other respiratory diseases may suffer the most and has a direct impact on morality. According to WHO, air pollution kills 7 million people worldwide. And the health effects of air pollution are serious – about one-third of the deaths from stroke, lung cancer, and heart disease are caused by the same. It is having an equivalent effect to that of smoking tobacco.
Plastic Pollution is the accumulation of synthetic plastic products in the environment to the point where they create problems for wildlife and their habitats as well as for human populations.
In 1907, the invention of Bakelite brought about a revolution in the materials by introducing truly synthetic plastic resins into world commerce.
However, by the end of the 20th century, plastics have become persistent polluters of different environmental niches, from Mount Everest to the bottom of the sea.
Whether being mistaken for food by animals, flooding low-lying areas by clogging drainage systems, or simply causing considerable aesthetic damage, plastics have attracted increasing global attention as a large-scale pollutant.
Millions of tonnes of plastic enter the seas each year, choking whales and other creatures, much of it in Asia. Plastic pollution has been found across the globe, from the most remote oceanic islands to high Swiss peaks. Microplastics/Microbeads have now also been found in tap water and human food around the world, with unknown implications for health.
This big-picture article explains the following in an analytical manner with a mindmap for quick revision.
- What is the magnitude of the plastic pollution problem?
- What are the major causes of plastic pollution?
- What are the effects of Plastic pollution?
- What are some of the international initiatives against plastic litter?
- What are India’s initiatives?
- What are the challenges in tackling plastic waste debris?
- What are the solutions?