Surat, Rajkot and Vadodara added to list of Critically Polluted Areas in Gujarat

The Indian Express | 3 days ago | 23-09-2022 | 02:35 pm

Surat, Rajkot and Vadodara added to list of Critically Polluted Areas in Gujarat

Three new cities — Surat, Rajkot and Vadodara — have been added to the list of Critically Polluted Areas (CPA) in Gujarat while Odhav, Naroda (in Ahmedabad), Bhavnagar and Junagadh have been removed from the list, stated the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in a report tabled in the Gujarat Assembly, Thursday.“Based on Comprehensive Environment Pollution Index (CEPI), the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change had declared (January 2010) six major industrial areas of Gujarat — Vapi, Ankleshwar, Vatva, Ahmedabad (Odhav and Naroda), Bhavnagar and Junagadh — as CPA and imposed moratorium on setting up industries and expansion of existing industries in these areas,” stated the report titled “Performance Audit of Air Pollution Control by Government of Gujarat”.“As per latest CEPI score submitted (July 2019) by Central Pollution Control Board to National Green Tribunal, three new cities Vadodara, Surat and Rajkot have been added to CPA list, while Odhav, Naroda, Bhavnagar and Junagadh were removed from the list,” it added.The audit watchdog stated that CEPI scores of Vadodara was highest in state, followed by Surat. Rajkot turned critically polluted from being a severely polluted area in 2009.Based on Remedial Action Plans proposed by the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB), approved by CPCB in September 2010 for the abatement of pollution in these CPAs, the ministry lifted the moratorium from Vapi (October 2010), Bhavnagar (February 2011), Junagadh (March 2011) and Ahmedabad (September 2013).The moratorium was reimposed in Vapi in September 2013 due to poor CEPI scores. The ministry finally lifted the moratorium on Vapi, Ankleshwar and Vatva in November 2016 based on re-assessed CEPI scores.The report stated that the GPCB was yet to comply with the 2016 directions of CPCB for installation of at least two Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Stations in each CPA.The CAG also rapped GPCB for not developing a system for period review of health impact assessment in critically polluted areas. The audit pointed out that 15 hospitals in industrial areas of Ahmedabad, Vapi and Ankleshwar reported 80,443 patients with asthma, bronchitis and acute respiratory infections between 2012-2017.“An increasing number of patients during this period depicts severity of the impact of air pollution on health,” the report stated.While the Gujarat government claimed that health impact assessment in CPAs were done by industries associations, the auditor stated, “Such studies were to be conducted by the GPCB through recognised health institutions once in 4-5 years…”The report also pointed out that under the National Clean Air Programme launched in January 2019, MoEF&CC had identified 102 cities as “non-attainment” cities that failed to meet the prescribed standards of air pollution.“Ahmedabad and Surat were among the non-attainment cities in Gujarat,” CAG stated adding that industries, vehicles, domestic fuel, construction and road dust were prominent sources of emission in these two cities.

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Eye on polls, Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation names 104 places
Times of India | 3 weeks ago | 02-09-2022 | 05:37 am
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AHMEDABAD: A few months ahead of the state assembly election, the city civic body has named 104 public places such as roads, crossroads, traffic islands, gardens and sports facilities. A road in Ramol Hathijan has been named after Indian-born American astronaut and mechanical engineer Kalpana Chawla and a tennis court at Vatva has been named after Olympian Milkha Singh. Of the places named, 47 have been named after politicians, 42 after religious leaders and the remaining 15 have been named after freedom fighters such as Bhagat Singh, sportspersons and celebrities. The politicians after whom places have been named include previous mayors, councillors, MLAs and parliamentarians from both BJP and Congress parties, including the late Sushma Swaraj and former Union finance minister Arun Jaitley. A garden in Vatva has been named after veteran Gujarati film and theatre actor Upendra Trivedi, who died in 2015. The road popularly called Gurukul Road, which was not named for 46 years, has now been officially named Swaminarayan Gurukul Road. A road in Vatva has been named Bharat Mata Road, and one in Ramol 'Kamal Path'. The public places that Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation's town planning committee has named include six sports facilities, five party plots, six gardens, 12 storm water pumping stations and 81 road stretches, crossroads and circles.

Eye on polls, Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation names 104 places