Bhupender Yadav (Union Environment Minister) said Friday that the government is committed towards ensuring clean air for all citizens. He stressed that it is essential to create a mass movement to combat air pollution in the coming years.
Yadav spoke at the first meeting under the National Clean Air Programme’s (NCAP) National Apex Committee. It was held in hybrid mode. Yadav stated that because different cities have different factors that contribute to air pollution, it is important to focus on the airshed.
Chaired the Apex Committee for the National Clean Air Programme’s first meeting. India has been a leader in adopting policy approaches that are crucial to conserving the environment. He tweeted that the Clean Air Mission must be a movement.
Minister expressed satisfaction at the increase in air quality in cities to 96 in 2020, from 86 in 2019, but noted that there are still many things to do.
The meeting was attended by Ashwini Kumar Chaubey (Union Minister of State for Environment), R P Gupta (Environment Secretary), Tanmay Kumar (CPCB chairman) and other senior officials of the ministry.
The National Clean Air Programme was launched in 2019. It is currently being implemented in 132 cities that are not in compliance with national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS). This program will continue for five years.
Out of 132, 124 cities contain 34 million plus city (MPCs/urban agglomerations) identified by the 15th Finance Commission.
Eight additional million cities are covered by XVFC grant to receive performance-based grants for improving air quality.
NCAP focuses on preparation of and implementation of action plans at the national, state, and local levels for the targeted 132 cites.
According to the Ministry of Environment under NCAP Centre level Steering Committee, Monitoring Committee, and Implementation Committee were established. The implementation progress is periodically reviewed by the Ministry of Environment.
It stated that seven meetings of the implementation committee, five monitoring and three steering committee meetings had been held so far.
NCAP For activities to improve the air quality of non-attainment areas, 375.44 million has been allocated in 2019-20 to 2020-21 FY 2021-22: 290 Crore allocated to 82 Cities
The program has been 700 crore allocation in 2021-2026 The 15th Finance Commission also provided a special grant for For FY 2020-21, 4,400 crore to 42 millions cities/urban agglomerations. A sum of The ministry announced that 12,139 crore has been allotted for improving the air quality of 42 million plus urban agglomerations from 2021-2022 through 2025-26.