Hyderabad: While Delhi debates the ban on 15-year-old vehicles by the National Green Tribunal, Hyderabad has around 8 lakh such vehicles.
These vehicles do not adhere to the ‘Bharat’ norms of vehicular emissions, which are based on the Euro standards and were introduced in India only in 2000. Most vehicles that were manufactured before 2000 emit high quantities of harmful gases like Carbon Monoxide, Nitrogen Oxide and other pollutants, which include hydrocarbons and particulate matter.
However, they will continue to ply on the city roads as there exists no study or plan by any government agency in Telangana on the feasibility of prohibiting such vehicles in the city limits even though pollution levels continue to soar.
As per officials of the Transport department and Pollution Control Board, lack of an efficient public transport mechanism is also a major hurdle towards prohibition of old vehicles. A senior Trans-port department official said, “If 8 lakh vehicles are to be banned the government has to ensure that their owners do not face any trouble and have a reliable public transport system to fall back on. However, the city's public transport system has not evolved as it should have, making it impossible to ban the vehicles.”
A senior PCB official added, "Some of the people who own 15-year-old vehicles must be from poor socio-economic backgrounds and they cannot be expected to just dump their vehicles and buy new ones."
An example of the huge difference bet-ween pre-2000 vehicles and the present Bharat Stage-IV is that BS-IV has the norm of 1 gram per kilometer of CO emission for petrol vehicles whereas it ranged between a maximum of 6.2 in 1998 to 27.1 in 1991.
A study by Intern-ational Council on Clean Transportation shows that if the emission standards would not have been introduced in India, PM emissions would have reached 3 lakh metric tons in the country by this year as compared to the present values of nearly half that.
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