Air Pollution

Centre reconstitutes EPCA, the authority tasked with tackling environment pollution in NCRPriority 1


Mains Paper 2: Governance | Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: EPCA

Mains level: Policy measures to tackle Air Pollution issues in the national capital.


Reconstitution of EPCA

  1. The Centre has reconstituted the Supreme Court-empowered Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority or the EPCA.
  2. It was tasked with taking various measures to tackle air pollution in the National Capital Region.
  3. The EPCA had enforced several measures, including closure of the Badarpur thermal power plant, ban on brick kilns, hot mix plants and stone crushers, and construction activities.

Why reconstitution?

  1. The tenure of the last EPCA expired on October 3.
  2. The EPCA was constituted with the objective of protecting and improving the quality of the environment and preventing and controlling the environmental pollution in the National Capital Region.
  3. The EPCA is also mandated to enforce Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) in New Delhi as per the pollution levels.


Environment Pollution Prevention and Control Authority (EPCA)

  1. The Union Government constitutes EPCA as Supreme Court mandated body for the National Capital Region under the section 3 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
  2. The Authority shall have the power suo-moto, or on the basis of complaints made by any individual, representative body or organization functioning in the field of environment.
  3. Such complaints may be against any individual, association, company, public undertaking or local body carrying on any industry, operation or process.
  4. It shall deal with environmental issues pertaining to the National Capital Region which may be referred to it by the Central Government.
  5. It takes all necessary steps to for controlling vehicular pollution, ensuring compliance of fuel quality standards, monitoring and coordinating action for traffic planning and management.

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