Action Alert: Delhi to curb diesel pollution
The Delhi government has announced plans to cut diesel emissions in the national capital region in the wake of strong public concerns about rising numbers of diesel vehicles and diesel related pollutants in the city’s ambient air. The plan recently approved by the Cabinet proposes an Environment Cess on diesel fuel. The revenue from this cess will be used to create a fund to finance Delhi’s clean air action plan. Delhi Chief minister Sheila Dikshit has also written to the Union government to introduce Euro IV diesel fuels and standards in the National Capital Region by 2008-09.
Simultaneously, the city government targets to phase out light duty commercial vehicles on diesel, organize pollution checks on incoming traffic at the city borders and enforce the bypassing of incoming trucks to Delhi. Financial incentives will be provided to vehicle owners interested in converting to CNG.
This announcement comes soon after the Centre for Science and Environment’s (CSE) warning that even Euro III diesel cars spew several times more toxics than their petrol versions. CSE had based its study on actual emissions data available from the Automotive Research Association of India. Stating that one diesel car is equal to 7.5 petrol cars in terms of emissions of particulate matter, and three petrol cars in terms of nitrogen oxide emissions, it had stated that air toxins from a diesel car were also harmful and carcinogenic.
The original web page also contains a number of useful links (e.g., briefing paper on clean diesel — http://www.cseindia.org/campaign/apc/pdf/Diesel_Briefing_paper.pdf