Nearly three lakh litres of petrol is burnt by vehicles stuck in traffic snarls or red lights in the national capital every day, the National Green Tribunal has noted. Directing the traffic police and other authorities to ensure there is no congestion on the roads in New Delhi, a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said any person who violates the directions of the tribunal on vehicular pollution should be strictly made liable for payment of environmental compensation.
Watch: How The Supreme Court Describe Delhi’s Air Pollution
It also made it clear that all amounts collected under NGT orders for environmental compensation should be utilised only for the purpose of prevention and control of air and water pollution.
“We have already noticed in our judgement that on the basis of the data available, nearly three lakh litres of petrol is burnt in NCT of Delhi every day by stationery vehicles in the traffic jam or the traffic light… The Traffic Police, Public Works Department and all public authorities shall ensure that there is free flow of traffic and there are no undue jams on the traffic lights or otherwise,” the bench said.
It also directed the Delhi government, Delhi Development Authority and municipal corporations to ensure that all parks, flyovers, roads around the government buildings are full of greenery to raise oxygen availability by 20 per cent.
“It will help a large number of people to breathe fresh air. Efforts should be made to cover open land with green grass,” the bench said. The NGT had earlier passed a slew of directions including setting up centralised and state level monitoring committees to prepare action plans to combat pollution in a bid to tackle environment emergencies.
It had directed that whenever air pollution reached severe levels, Delhi and its four neighbouring states would have to take a set of emergency measures including sprinkling water from choppers, stopping construction activities and shutting down polluting power plants and gensets.