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Are we serious about curbing pollution? Bah!

December 31, 2015 12:38 IST

Govt may delay BS-V and -VI implementation by a year

With petroleum companies expressing their inability to introduce BS-V fuel by 2019, the ministry of road, transport and highways is considering to extend the deadline for implementing the norms for four-wheelers by a year. The proposed move will reduce harmful impact of carbon emission on environment.

According to an earlier draft proposal, BS-V norms were to be implemented from April 1, 2019, for new vehicle models and April 1, 2020, for existing vehicle models. Further, there was a proposal to implement BS VI norms from April 1, 2021, for new vehicle models and April 1, 2022, for existing vehicle models.

Now the ministry is considering merging the different dates for new and existing models. According to the proposal, it is planning to implement BS-V norms by 2020 for both new and existing models and 2022 for BS-VI for new as well existing models. A senior official in the ministry of road, transport and highways said that a draft notification for the implementation of BS-V and BS-VI norms for two-wheeler categories will be introduced on Thursday.

Officials in the ministry said they had decided to implement BS-V norms from April 1, 2020. BS-VI norms will be implemented from April 1, 2022. "We had an meeting on Wednesday to resolve issues and fix a timeline for rollout of BS V and VI emission norms. The representatives of ministry of petroleum and natural gas expressed inability to make fuel available by 2019," said an official in road, transport and highways ministry.

He further added, " The current meeting will be followed by couple of consultation meetings then the final call be taken. We are working on an idea to extend the date by one year making it 2020 instead of 2019 and 2022 instead of 2021."

Earlier, while welcoming the government's decision to move over to BS V emission norms, The Society of Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) made apprehension that in case of unavailability of the requisite fuel, use of BS IV fuel might damage the engine as well as the after-treatment devices fitted in the new vehicle. Also, this might vitiate the new technology benefits and the expected improvements in air quality. If the vehicle and fuel is not compatible, the higher emission norms cannot be met.

With reference to the upgradation to BS VI level by 2021/22 SIAM has proposed that the BS VI norms can be advanced to 2023 by compressing the technology development time by one year. Any further advancement of BS VI norms will neither be technically possible or advisable due to the extensive testing and validation of the technologies.

Technology Providers have expressed their inability to provide fully validated BS VI solutions for all types and models of 4 wheelers before 2023. Introducing technologies without proper validation and testing on the Indian roads will raise questions on several safety issues- such as car fires which can endanger human lives and significant risk that should be avoided at all costs.

Vijay C Roy in New Delhi
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