Day 3: Pollution In Delhi Rises; Odd-Even Plan To Return
There was no respite for Delhiites as they woke up to the third day (Nov 9) of a thick blanket of smog enveloping the city. The situation didn’t improve a wee bit as pollutants in the air reached hazardous levels, forcing a major chunk of population to stay indoors. Doctors have already declared the situation to be a “pollution emergency”.
Factors causing the problem
A lot of factors like illegal crop burning in neighbouring Punjab and Haryana, vehicle exhaust emissions in a city with limited public transport and swirling construction dust are behind this environmental crisis.
Measures already taken
The Kejriwal government took a slew of measures on Wednesday to control the situation. For instance, it banned commercial trucks from the city unless they are transporting essential commodities. It also stopped all construction. Car parking charges were raised four times to force residents to use public transport. It also ordered the schools and colleges to be shut down till Sunday.
Read on to know some measures that the city government is pondering over:
Bringing back odd-even scheme
- The Delhi government has decided to bring back the “odd-even” scheme for Monday to Friday. The Delhi High Court suggested the scheme could help “unclog the city”.
Emergency meeting to discuss possible solutions
- The Delhi High Court has ordered an emergency meeting within three days between top bureaucrats of the central government and those of Delhi, Haryana and Punjab. Representatives of agencies that handle pollution are also to attend.
- A bench of Justices S Ravindra Bhat and Sanjeev Sachdeva asked the government to consider the option of “cloud seeding” — to induce rainfall artificially — as an immediate step to bring down the dust and particulate matter in the atmosphere.
It is sad to see the country’s national capital in dire straits. Some stringent short-term and long-term solutions are required to curb the problem.