NGT Order on Air Pollution Control in Uttarakhand [%new%]
21st August 2014
News Credit- Sakhi Shah
The issue is with respect to iron and steel units in Jasodharpur Industrial Area that release a lot of air pollution, and slag into rivers in Uttakarakhand. The NGT has passed an order regarding the same. The bench had earlier constituted an violation of prescribed standards for emission by iron industries in the state.
The NGT directed the State Pollution Control Board (USPCB) to inspect air pollution from industries in Uttarakhand to inspect all air pollution control devices installed in iron and steel units in Jasodharpur Industrial Area near Kotdwar.
The bench, headed by Justice U.D. Salvi, had asked the USPCB to look into the efficacy of air pollution control devices and electrical interlocking devices installed at these units, and report back to the bench on the next hearing on September 16th. The bench also asked these units to submit a year-wise data regarding the annual production, slag produced, and disposal rates. It also asked the units to place before it data on commercial demand for the slag. This was because the counsel for the units submitted that the slag could be used to manufacture cement and bricks.
Further, the tribunal asked the District Magistrate and the Deputy Commissioner and Superintendent of Police of Kotdwar to report on the steps taken by them for the removal of the slag. The tribunal also asked the USPCB to close all industrial units in the area that are functioning without the consent of the board. The USPCB has only granted 10 out of 18 industries permission to operate till 2014-15.
The tribunal has also held that the inspection report shall clearly indicate the functioning of these units along with the stack and ambient air quality samples and the analysis to be included in report.