However, the MPCB is set to address both the issues as per the draft action plan for Mumbai.
Mumbai: While the Union Budget 2018-19 has dealt with the problem of air pollution in Delhi, environmentalists have claimed that it has no mention of any national-level action plan to curb pollution in other critically polluted cities. PM10 levels arising from dust pollution has significantly risen in Mumbai along with other cities as per reports by the Greenpeace India, Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) and Central Pollution Control Board, as earlier reported by The Asian Age. To tackle the crisis of air pollution in Mumbai, meanwhile, the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) is going to release a draft action plan for curbing air pollution in the city. MPCB officials stated that while it is in the final stage of preparation, the problems of vehicular pollution and dust pollution has been addressed in the action plan.
“The mention of air pollution as a cause of concern by (Union finance minister Arun) Jaitley showed some hope. However, not mentioning the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP), which the government committed to late last year in the Parliament or not announcing any budgetary allocation for the same was a disappointment. More than 80 per cent of cities in the country where air quality is monitored are severely polluted and is impacting 47 million children across the country. The minister’s budget speech should have addressed the need to increase monitoring stations across the country,” said Sunil Dahiya, senior campaigner, Greenpeace India.
Analysts at the CSE, Delhi, a non-profit organisation stated that two key sectors that need immediate intervention in the form of enhanced infusion of funds, mobility and clean fuels, have been ignored. However, the MPCB is set to address both the issues as per the draft action plan for Mumbai. “ We have identified that PM10 and PM2.5 levels in the city are major contributors to air pollution. “We will be focusing on decreasing the number of vehicles on the road and improving the conditions of roads. Mumbai roads need to be potholes free to prevent the accumulation of dust and to prevent traffic congestion that leads to more emission in the air,” said P. Anbalagan, member secretary, MPCB