Under the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP), the pollution regulatory authority has banned the use of diesel generators in Delhi and NCR cities of Gurgaon, Ghaziabad, Noida, Greater Noida, Faridabad, Sonepat, Panipat and Bahadurgarh from Tuesday.
However, use of generators for emergency and essential services, such as hospitals, railway and metro stations, are excluded from the ban. Until last year, the ban on generators covered only the national capital.
The Haryana government had requested the EPCA to exempt builder-developed colonies and societies which are supplying electricity through generators alone from the ban, "pending resolution of infrastructure inadequacies".
At a meeting on Friday, officials from Haryana told EPCA that there are several areas that do not have power connections due to inadequate electrical infrastructure and distribution and transmission constraints. These include 16 colonies developed by builders, DLF cyber city and Sector 58 and beyond in Gurgaon and Sector 75 and beyond in Faridabad.
Even though the ban has been enforced in Haryana, such areas and industries are not being penalised for using diesel generators.
The Haryana officials said they have surplus power -- 12,500 MW against the base peak demand of 11,000 MW -- and can supply electricity to these colonies and DLF cyber city which is currently dependent on diesel generators.
They said in Gurgaon there are 5,540 diesel generators of more than 100 kilowatt capacity. The number is 1,833 for Faridabad, 753 for Sonepat, 74 for Panipat and 17 for Bahadurgarh.
Of these, more than 80 per cent are being used in industries as backups for outages as all these units are connected to regular power supply, Additional Chief Secretary (Power), Haryana, D C Gupta said.
The National Green Tribunal on Thursday junked a plea by Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitaran Nigam seeking breather from the EPCA order on banning use of diesel generators to combat air pollution in the National Capital Region (NCR), saying citizens are entitled to breathe fresh air.
EPCA member Sunita Narain said a notice can be issued to industries that under GRAP, they have to use power from the state and during outages, they can use diesel generators which will be monitored carefully.
The pollution watchdog directed Haryana to identify units that are not using electricity for processing and manufacturing and stop them from using diesel generators. The Haryana officials said they need six months to set the things right and from next year, a complete ban can be imposed on diesel generators.
EPCA chairman Bhure Lal said during his travel to pollution hotspots in Haryana, he found plumes of toxic smoke billowing from chimneys, which means the industries are using polluting fuels in industrial applications.
"All the boilers are polluting the air," he said.
Uttar Pradesh officials told EPCA that power outages in NCR cities of Ghaziabad, Noida and Greater Noida are "minimal". However, EPCA said there have been a number of complaints of heavy power cuts.
The Uttar Pradesh officials said they will to assess the situation and get back to EPCA on October 22. PTI GVS NSD NSD
Disclaimer :- This story has not been edited by Outlook staff and is auto-generated from news agency feeds. Source: PTI