In a step to curb pollution in the national capital, the Environment Pollution (Control and Prevention) Authority (EPCA) on Tuesday announced a ban on the entry of trucks in the city, a measure by the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP). Trucks’ entry will be banned in Delhi from November 8-10.
The announcement comes after the air quality in Delhi touched hazardous and severe levels post Diwali celebrations. According to GRAP, if the air quality index reads severe or Emergency (ambient PM2.5or PM10concentration values of 300µg/m3 or 500 µg/m3 respectively persist for 48 hours or more) the entry of trucks, except essential commodities, will be banned in the city.
Amidst the festive season, the air quality has been depleting since the last two weeks. Many places across the city have recorded very poor to severe levels of air quality making it difficult for people to breathe in clean air.
Earlier, the ECPA had issued an action plan that was to be adapted during and post-Diwali:
· All construction activities involving excavation and civil construction (excluding internal finishing/work where no construction material is used) will be stopped in Delhi and other NCR districts from November 1?10, 2018.
· All industries using coal and biomass as fuel will stop functioning in Delhi and other NCR districts from November 4?10, 2018. Industries that use natural gas as fuel can continue to operate. However, except Badarpur, all NCR plants are exempted from this order.
· Brick kilns in NCR will be closed down from November 1?10, 2018.
Furthermore, the ECPA had also ordered to reduce the use of private vehicles and not burn garbage.
The air quality index (AQI) in Delhi recorded 302 at 11 pm on November 7.