BS VI norms
- November 4, 2022
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
BS VI norms
Context: Annual case of Delhi pollution during the time of winter.
Bharat stage (BS):
Bharat stage (BS) emission standards are laid down by the government to regulate the output of air pollutants from the internal combustion engine and spark-ignition engine equipment, including motor vehicles.
The central government has mandated that vehicle makers must manufacture, sell and register only BS-VI (BS6) vehicles from April 1, 2020.
The first emission norms were introduced in India in 1991for petrol and in 1992 for diesel vehicles. Following these, the catalytic converter became mandatory for petrol vehicles and unleaded petrol was introduced in the market.
Difference Between BS4 and BS6
- Both BS-IV and BS-VI are unit emission norms that set the maximumpermissible levels for pollutants that an automotive or a two-wheeler exhaust can emit.
What area unit BSI, BSII, BSIII, BSIV, and BSVI emission norms?
The abbreviation BS, as mentioned above, refers to ‘Bharat Stage’.
- BSI- was introduced in the year 2000,
- BSII (BS2) was introduced in 2001
- BSIII (BS3) was introduced in 2005
- BSIV was introduced in 2017
the delay between the introduction of BS3 and BS4 resulted in fast-tracking the BSVI or BS6 emission norms rather than BSV (BS5) norms.
Supreme court ruling –
- On 29 April 1999, the Supreme Court of India ruled that all vehicles in the country had to meet Euro I or India 2000 norms by June 1, 1999, and Euro II would be mandatory in the National Capital Region (NCR) from April 2000.
- Carmakers were not prepared for this transition and in a subsequent judgment, the implementation of Euro II was deferred.
- In a recent judgment, the Supreme Court banned the sale and registration of motor vehicles conforming to Bharat Stage IV emission standard in the entire country from 1 April 2020.
Committee Recommendations: Mashelkar Committee
- In 2002, the government accepted the report submitted by the Mashelkar committee, which proposed a road map for the rollout of Euro-based emission norms in India.
- It also recommended a phased implementation of future norms, with regulations being implemented in major cities first and extended to the rest of the country after a few years.
- Based on the recommendations of the committee, the National Auto Fuel policy was announced officially in 2003.
- The road map for the implementation of the BS norms was laid out until 2010. The policy also created guidelines for auto fuels, reduction of pollution from older vehicles and R&D for air quality data creation and health administration.
- The standards and the timeline for implementation are set by the Central Pollution Control Board under the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.
- Since October 2010, Bharat Stage (BS) III norms were enforced across the country. BS-IV emission norms were put in place in 13 major cities from April 2010, and the entire country from April 2017.
- In 2016, the government announced that the country would skip the BS-V norms altogether and adopt BS-VI norms by 2020.
- However, in Delhi, due to the sudden rise of pollution, it was planned to introduce in 2018 only, which was protested by automobile companies, since they planned their policy according to the 2020 timeline.
What makes BS-VI fuel better?
Sulphur content in fuel is a major cause for concern. Sulphur dioxide released by fuel burning is a major pollutant that affects health as well.
BS-VI fuel’s sulphur content is much lower than BS-IV fuel. It is reduced to 10 mg/kg max in BS-VI from 50 mg/kg under BS-IV. However, Vehicles that are compliant with BS-VI will also be more expensive.
AIR QUALITY INDEX (AQI)
- The air quality index (AQI) is an index for reporting air quality on a daily basis.
- It is a measure of how air pollution affects one’s health within a short time period.
- The purpose of the AQI is to help people know how the local air quality impacts their health.
- The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) calculates the AQI for five major air pollutants, for which national air quality standards have been established to safeguard public health.
- Ground-level ozone
- Particle pollution/particulate matter (PM2.5/pm 10)
- Carbon Monoxide
- Sulfur dioxide
- Nitrogen dioxide
The higher the AQI value, the greater the level of air pollution and the greater the health concerns. The concept of AQI has been widely used in many developed countries for over the last three decades. AQI quickly disseminates air quality information in real-time.
In India, The National Air Quality Quality (AQI) India was launched on 17 September 2014 in New Delhi under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan by the then Environment Minister Shri PrakashJavadekar.
Objectives of Air Quality Index (AQI)
- Comparing air quality conditions at different locations/cities.
- It also helps in identifying faulty standards and inadequate monitoring programmes.
- AQI helps in analysing the change in air quality (improvement or degradation).
- AQI informs the public about environmental conditions. It is especially useful for people suffering from illnesses aggravated or caused by air pollution.
Who is most at risk from air pollution?
- People with lung diseases, such as asthma, chronic bronchitis, and emphysema
- Children, including teenagers
- Active people of all ages who exercise or work extensively outdoors
- Some healthy people are more sensitive to ozone
What is the National Air Quality Index?
- Launched in 2014 with outline ‘One Number – One Color -One Description’ for the common man to judge the air quality within his vicinity.
- The measurement of air quality is based on eight pollutants, namely: Particulate Matter (PM10), Particulate Matter (PM2.5), Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2), Sulphur Dioxide (SO2), Carbon Monoxide (CO), Ozone (O3), Ammonia (NH3), and Lead (Pb).
- AQI has six categories of air quality. These are: Good, Satisfactory, Moderately Polluted, Poor, Very Poor and Severe.
- It has been developed by the CPCB in consultation with IIT-Kanpur and an expert group comprising medical and air-quality professionals.
Commission for Air Quality Management in National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas
- This was formed to tackle the pollution situation in areas around Delhi NCR.
- The System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR) is a national initiative introduced by the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) to measure the air quality of a metropolitan city, by measuring the overall pollution level and the location-specific air quality of the city.
- The system is indigenously developed by the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), Pune and is operationalized by the India Meteorological Department (IMD).
- SAFAR is an integral part of India’s first Air Quality Early Warning System operational in Delhi.
- It monitors all weather parameters like temperature, rainfall, humidity, wind speed, and wind direction, UV radiation, and solar radiation.
- Pollutants monitored:5, PM10, Ozone, Carbon Monoxide (CO), Nitrogen Oxides (NOx), Sulfur Dioxide (SO2), Benzene, Toluene, Xylene, and Mercury.