Vijayawada: The recent Good Governance Index (GGI) on the environment released by the Centre has ignored several important parameters, including pollution. Just like the governments, the index too dealt with the subject in a superficial and customary manner. The report was prepared by the Centre for Good Governance (CGG).
As per the preamble of the environment sector mentioned in the GGI — Assessment of State of Governance report, brought out by the department of administrative reforms and public grievances (DARPG) — “the growing concerns on global warming, pollution and increase in temperature led to the study of another important sector, the environment.”
But the report did not take into consideration air, water and noise pollution when it gave the rankings. The report did not capture the highly contaminated environs and the failure of the states to contain it. Incidentally, the two Telugu states fared very poorly with Andhra Pradesh occupying the 16th position and Telangana state the 17th.
All that the authors of the report considered was two basic parameters – availability of state-level action plan for climate change and change in the forest cover. Inquiries by Deccan Chronicle revealed that the DARPG had decided not to take into consideration the pollution levels, be it air or water, as most of the states either do not have measuring stations or have them in inadequate numbers. “In the absence of data from some states, it would be difficult to put them on an equal pedestal and judge their performance,” said a senior department official.
The Centre for Good Governance, which prepared the report, awarded marks equally to all the states if they had prepared an action plan for climate change. It did not even go into how effectively the states were implementing the action plans. The ranking among the equals was then decided basing on the cumulative forest cover change in the last three years. Here, too, only the forest cover in the designated forests was taken into consideration, leaving the green drive taken up in the non-forest areas.
“We proposed certain parameters and the Centre after deliberations dropped some and selected indicators which are outcome and output based and does not need primary or field data,” CGG DG Rajendra Nimje told Deccan Chronicle.
The exercise, he hoped, would provide inputs to governments to take corrective action to improve the service delivery....