MAY 14

  • Green brigade supports Govt. decision

  • Noida residents take charge of waste management

  • Deadend for pollution check dodgers

  • Green brigade supports Govt. decision

    THE HINDU [14 MAY, 2002]
    By Our Staff Reporter

    NEW DELHI MAY 12. Environmentalists as well as auto-industry representatives have supported the decision of the Delhi Government to get rid of the two-stroke vehicles and the auto-rickshaws as per the direction of the Apex Court.

    This endorsement by the green brigade was given at a seminar on "City Governance for Clean Air: Learning from each other in Asia'' organised by the Centre for Science and Environment here this past Saturday.

    Speaking on the occasion, the Delhi Transport Minister, Ajay Maken said that the future of the Capital lay in clean air and therefore, the Government has to take every necessary action to ensure the good health and environment of the Capital.

    In its recent order, the Apex Court had directed that only four stroke vehicles running on clean fuel will be allowed ply in the city. The Delhi Government has, accordingly, decided to ban the registration of two-stroke vehicles and auto-rickshaws in the Capital.

    Supporting this decision, B. Sengupta, Additional Director, Central Pollution Control Board, said that the two-stroke vehicles were largely responsible for the emission of unused benzene and its other derivatives.

    On the occasion, Mr. Maken also apprised those present about the current status of CNG driven vehicles in the Capital. At present, around 51,000 vehicles were plying here but the Capital was still not receiving its due quota of CNG inspite of an apex court directive to the IGL to provide 16.12 lakh gas per day to Delhi.

    According to the State transport Minister, Delhi required solutions that address the specific nature of transport problems which the city faces. And for this apart from a strong political will and a readiness to implement private-public partnership, what is needed is transparency in the whole process.


    Noida residents take charge of waste management

    THE TIMES OF INDIA [14 MAY, 2002]

    NOIDA: In a pilot project launched by local residents, domestic waste from over 1,500 Noida homes is being privately collected from the doorstep.

    Under the project, partly funded by the Noida Authority, the garbage is segregated, transported, treated, sold or otherwise disposed of in an environment-friendly manner.

    The large, often unsightly, garbage bins of the Noida Authority have been removed from the area around these houses. Each household in the project pays about Rs 15 per month and the authority chips in with Rs 5,000.

    Residents hope the project will soon break even or perhaps make a small profit. And if all goes well, Noida Authority hopes to extend the project to cover the entire city.

    According to Commander V K Nagpal (retd), director of the domestic waste management wing of Noida’s Citizens Action Council, the project began in Sectors 39, 40 and 41, on April 3. The authority provided a 3,000 sq metre plot, in the green belt of Sector 50, for digging compost pits in which to put biodegradable waste.

    ‘‘We have dug the pits and started composting with our own money,’’ says Commander Nagpal, who lives in Sector 41. ‘‘In a couple of months we will start selling the compost to a wholesaler for Re 1 a kg. We are selling the non-biodegradable waste to kabaris who take it for recycling,’’ he adds.

    Nagpal says garbage collectors, hired by the respective residents’ welfare associations, collect waste from each house and segregate it. ‘‘Almost 80 per cent of the waste, by volume, is non-biodegradable. Each home churns out about 1 kg of biodegradable waste a day. We have contracted with 10 cycle-rickshaw pullers to take the waste to the composting site,’’ he adds.


    Deadend for pollution check dodgers

    THE TIMES OF INDIA [14 MAY, 2002]

    NEW DELHI: Those evading pollution checks of their vehicles, mandatory every three months, had better watch out. They could find the registration of their vehicles cancelled, says transport minister Ajay Maken.

    Computerised pollution certificates will make this possible soon. What’s more, from May 19, even CNG vehicles will be checked for pollution.

    Pollution certificates are manually issued by around 300 petrol pumps and 130 workshops, for a fee of Rs 25 for petrol vehicles and Rs 50 for diesel ones. This gave rise to irregularities since pollution dodgers could get their certificate by paying the amount without the vehicle actually being checked.

    But in the new system, the pollution-checking machine will be attached to a computer, a web camera and a printer. Certificates will therefore also have a photo of the vehicle with its number plate.

    This would ensure that the vehicle is actually present during the check and lead to faster verification of records. At present, records are kept in egisters — checking them is a cumbersome procedure.

    ‘‘Each centre will on a weekly basis, have to send details of those vehicles which have been issued pollution certificates. After three months, when the next check is due, the computer will automatically send notices if the vehicles haven’t been checked. This way we can stop enforcement teams from being out on the streets,’’ said Maken. The petrol pumps too had better gird up — vigilance will be stepped up.

    Two pilot projects have already been introduced — one in Veejay Service Station in Gulabi Bagh and the other at Bhatia Service Station in Safdarjung. Why isn’t it being implemented in all 430 centres?

    ‘‘There has been some resistance from the pumps — an attitudinal change is required,’’ says Maken. Besides, these pumps would have to shell out around Rs 50,000 for the computer. Plus, there would be additional costs — special cabins for the computers and cartridges for the printer, say transport officials.