The Commission for Air Quality Management in NCR and Adjoining Areas Bill, 2021
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-II – Policies and interventions and GS-III – Pollution
In news Recently, The Commission for Air Quality Management in the National Capital Region (NCR) and Adjoining Areas bill, 2021 was introduced in the Lok Sabha.
What are the key features of the Bill?
- It provides for the constitution of a Commission for better coordination, research, identification, and resolution of problems related to air quality in the NCR and adjoining areas.
- Adjoining areas have been defined as areas of Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh adjoining the NCR where any source of pollution may cause adverse impact on air quality in the NCR.
- It also dissolves the Environment Pollution Prevention and Control Authority established in the NCR in 1998.
- Functions of the Commission:
- Co-ordinating actions by concerned state governments (Delhi, Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh)
- Planning and executing plans to prevent and control air pollution in the NCR
- Providing a framework for identification of air pollutants
- Conducting research and development through networking with technical institutions
- Training and creating a special workforce to deal with issues related to air pollution
- Preparing various action plans such as increasing plantation and addressing stubble burning.
- Powers of the Commission:
- Restricting activities influencing air quality
- Investigating and conducting research related to environmental pollution impacting air quality
- Preparing codes and guidelines to prevent and control air pollution
- Issuing directions on matters including inspections, or regulation which will be binding on the concerned person or authority.
- It may impose and collect environment compensation from farmers causing pollution by stubble burning. This compensation will be prescribed by the central government.
- The Commission will be the sole authority with jurisdiction over matters defined in the bill.
- In case of any conflict, the orders or directions of the Commission will prevail over the orders of the respective state governments, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), state PCBs, and state-level statutory bodies.
- Composition: The Commission will consist of: (i) a Chairperson, (ii) an officer of the rank of a Joint Secretary as the member-secretary and Chief Coordinating Officer, (iii) a currently serving or former Joint Secretary from the central government as a full-time member, (iii) three independent technical members with expertise related to air pollution, and (iv) three members from non-government organisations.
- The Commission will also include ex-officio members: (i) from the central government and concerned state governments, and (ii) technical members from CPCB, Indian Space Research Organisation, and NITI Aayog. It may also appoint representatives of certain ministries
- Tenure: The Chairperson and members of the Commission will have a tenure of three years or till the age of seventy years, whichever is earlier.
News Source: TH