NGT asks Railways for report on Emissions from Engines

New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Wednesday sought a report on emissions from diesel locomotives and a comparative chart with regard to international standards.

The tribunal, which was hearing a petition filed by Dwarka resident S.K.Goyal about harmful emissions from diesel locomotives, has directed the Ministry of Railways to hold a meeting with the secretaries of IIT-Delhi, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the Ministry of Petroleum to set emission standards and ensure that railway locomotives do not pollute.

On Wednesday, the Railways informed the tribunal that though they have already tested 25 locomotive engines, it would be appropriate to test at least 50 in order to arrive at a proper analysis. “Let the Railways file a final report in relation to the 25 locomotive engines that are already subjected to analysis. They would also file a comparative chart in relation to the standards provided internationally. Let this be done within two weeks from today,” the NGT ordered.

Earlier, the Ministry of Railways had said the exercise of developing emission guidelines for new diesel locomotives and retrofitting was extensive and would initially cost Rs. 19 crore.

“The work of developing emission guidelines is substantial and needs financial resources that will initially cost Rs.19 crore, which would be pooled in by stakeholders such as the Ministry of Petroleum, Ministry of Environment & Forests (MoEF) and the Ministry of Railways,” the Railways Ministry had said in an affidavit filed through its counsel Om Prakash.

The Railways has also developed a draft protocol for emission standards. In January, a committee formed by the NGT had decided that the Research Designs and Standards Organisation (RDSO) of the Railways would prepare a draft monitoring protocol for exhaust emission measurement of diesel locomotives.

The Railways, in consultation with the CPCB, Ministry of Petroleum and MoEF and IIT, RITES and the International Centre for Automotive Technology, has developed a monitoring protocol for diesel locomotives, based on demonstration of sampling and monitoring conducted in January earlier this year.

The protocol has been ratified by the CPCB and IIT-Delhi.

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