Managing Air Pollution: Delhi To Receive Over Rs 18 Crore From Union Govt
The funds are allotted under the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP).
This year, for the first time, Delhi will be receiving more than Rs 18 crore from the Centre to address important gaps in its air pollution management, news agency PTI reported.
The funds are allotted under the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP), which is a national level strategy that aims to bring down the concentration of PM 2.5 and PM 10 by 20 to 30 percent (down from 2017 levels) by the end of 2024. The rest of the funding for the project will be obtained through a convergence of other schemes, an official said.
"Delhi will get Rs 18.74 crore under NCAP. This is the first time it will be receiving funds under the programme since it started in 2019."An official told PTI
The acceptable annual standard for PM 10 and PM 2.5 is 60 micrograms per cubic metre and 40 micrograms per cubic metre respectively.
The targeted PM 10 concentration for Delhi is 168 micrograms per cubic metre by the end of 2024. The city's average PM 10 concentration was 240 micrograms per cubic metre in 2017.
A total of 132 non-attainment cities that do not meet the prescribed national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) are covered by NCAP.
According to the publication, the cities were identified based on the ambient air quality data gathered in the 2011-2015 period under the National Air Monitoring Programme.
"The national capital did not get any funds under NCAP for two years because it had other resources available – a green cess levied on diesel vehicles above 2,000 cc – which is deposited with the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and a pollution tax on commercial vehicles entering Delhi."An official in the Union Environment Ministry said, as quoted by PTI
Fund Allocation Has Improved This Year Under NCAP Scheme
The official added that the fund allocation has improved this year under NCAP. As many as fifty cities, he said are getting a 'good' amount (Rs 4,400 in 2020-21 and Rs 2,217 crore in 2021-22) from the Financial Commission. Hence, more funds are available for the remaining 82 cities under the scheme. So it was decided to allot some for Delhi as well, the official told.
Rs 290 crore is reportedly available for the 82 cities this year.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is likely to soon announce his government's "Winter Action Plan" to solve the city's air pollution problem. The plan is set to address 10 important issues including dust pollution, stubble burning, pollution hotspots, and working of smog towers.
(With inputs from PTI)
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