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Decision on lifting moratorium on three industrial clusters in Gujarat–Vapi, Ankleshwar and Vatva–will be taken soon with the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) all set to present its final report shortly, a top government official said today. “(Lifting of moratorium) is an important decision, and we have been making representation (to CPCB) for that. We are confident now, Centre will take its decision, and it will be in our favour,” Additional Chief Secretary, state forests and environment department, Arvind Agrawal told media persons.
He said the pollution level in all three regions have reached within environmental norms prescribed by the Centre, and CPCB’s reports will be favourable for the industrial clusters. “In all three regions–Vapi, Ankleshwar, and Vatva–we have reached within the Centre’s prescribed norms. Now CPCB will present its report, and I am hopeful of the report to be positive,” Agrawal said.
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He was speaking at the curtain raiser event of the Wastech, a pre Vibrant International Summit and Expo on environmental sustainability to be held between December 2 and December 4. Vapi, Ankleshwar and Vatva are among country’s critically polluted industrial clusters on which the Centre’s Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change had imposed moratorium in 2009 thereby restricting any activities of expansion of existing industrial units or setting up on new units.
Member Secretary of Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) Hardik Shah told reporters at the event that the CPCB has been monitoring the three industrial clusters since last year. “Since last year, monitoring by CPCB was done and a third party monitoring for compliance is also required to be done which has possibly not been done because of which it is stuck,” he said. “This time CPCB has developed a new formula regarding this, like monitoring twice, pre-monsoon and post-monsoon monitoring. Both are almost done now,” he said.