ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Will the 2018 NGT Order Lead to Improvement in River Water Quality?

On 20 September 2018, the National Green Tribunal ordered all states and union territories to prepare action plans within the next two months for restoring the quality of polluted river stretches to at least “bathing standards” within six months of the finalisation of the plans. However, making of the action plans alone is not likely to lead to an improvement in the river water quality.

Sustainable Use of Water

Projections of water demand and supply based on various scenarios provide a backdrop for examining the relevance of alternative interventions to achieve sustainable use of India's water resources. Policy interventions in the water sector need to address the conservation and better use of water by correcting instruments that have resulted in inefficient use of water and pollution of water bodies. Adoption of such interventions must involve a wider dialogue within civil society and a study of the knowledge available from around the world.

Environment and Accountability

While there are several empirical studies on agriculture-related environmental problems, such as soil degradation and wind and water erosion, only a few studies have dealt with environmental problems in the agricultural sector due to industrial pollution. The difference is that the first set of problems are intra-sectoral while the second is intersectoral. This paper attempts to study the environmental impact of water pollution on rural communities in general and on agricultural production, human health, and livestock in particular. Some important issues in this regard are (a) linkages between industrial development and changes in the micro (local) environment; (b) damage to crops and animal husbandry due to industrial pollution; and (c) impact on health and sanitation in rural communities. These issues are studied in detail with the help of primary data collected from a pollution-affected village in Andhra Pradesh.

Kerala - Grasim: Polluter Does Not Pay

The Grasim Industries unit, long tagged the "most pollutant industry in Kerala", has shut shop without paying compensation for the damage it inflicted on the environment. There is also resentment among the workers on the severance package offered, and the lack of social amenities at their workplace.

Pollution: Prevention vs Control

Industrial pollution in many developing countries including India is managed/controlled using end-of-pipe (EOP) treatment. Using available evidence it is argued here that EOP treatment like common effluent treatment plant (CETP) does not fix the problem, as many hazardous persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and toxic metals remain in the treated water or in the sludge. Instead of pollution control, pollution prevention should be the aim of any policy intervention. Besides, an integrated system where prevention rather than the control is the norm along with the use of cleaner production is more relevant in a fast growing economy like India.
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