Will initially cost Rs.19 crore, Railways tells NGT
With increased emphasis on emission from diesel locomotives, the Ministry of Railways said the exercise of developing emission guidelines for new diesel locomotives and for retrofitment is extensive and would initially cost Rs 19 crore.
“The work of developing emission guideline is substantial and need financial resources initially at a cost of Rs.19 crore, which would be pooled in by various stakeholders such as Ministry of Petroleum, Ministry of Environment & Forests and the Ministry of Railways,” the Railways Ministry said in an affidavit filed through its counsel Om Prakash.
The Railways has also developed a draft protocol for emission standards.
“Letters were written to the secretary, MoEF and Secretary MoPNG by chairman Railway Board for volunteering to contribute towards the cost of engaging a specialised expert agency along with railways (for developing the guidelines). The ministries, however, expressed their inability to contribute towards the exercise,” said the affidavit.
The affidavit was filed in pursuance of various meetings held by a committee formed on the directions of the National Green Tribunal on a petition filed by activist SK Goyal highlighting the harmful emissions from diesel locomotives.
The NGT had in November last year ordered that Ministry of Railways shall hold a meeting at the level of secretary with IIT, CPCB and the Ministry of Petroleum and that the committee shall within six months collect data, study and prepare guidelines and set emission standards which CPCB shall ensure are duly implemented by all concerned agencies and the Railways to ensure that no pollution results from the Railway locomotive engines.
In January, the committee decided that RDSO would prepare a draft monitoring protocol for exhaust emission measurement of Indian Railway’s Diesel Locomotive.
The Railways has now sought permission from the Tribunal to carry forward exercise in five years.
The Committee decided on various works to be done with regard to setting emission guidelines, which include inventory estimation for locomotive emissions in 2014-15, formulation of emission standards and compliance testing procedures and estimation of emission inventory in control case for next 20 years.
The Railways has in consultation with CPCB, Ministry of Petroleum and MoEF and IIT, RITES and International Centre for Automotive Technology developed a monitoring protocol for diesel locomotives based on demonstration of sampling and monitoring done in January 2015 using mobile ETC at Shakurbasti, Delhi.
The protocol has been ratified by CPCB and IIT Delhi