Expressing concern on rising air pollution in metropolitan cities of the country, Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dharmendra Pradhan on Friday said that CNG will be available for two-wheelers in Pune soon. He added that there are 23 lakh two-wheelers in the city and if all of them started running on CNG then it will have a positive impact on the environment. Pradhan today agreed to the demand of the bio-fuel based industry too. He called for collaborating with his ministry in setting up a Centre of Excellence on Alternative Green Fuel at IIT Bombay.
In Delhi, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government too is looking at alternative fuel to reduce air pollution in the city.
Reports suggesting because of Delhi metro price hike more than 3,00,000 people have shunned metro as their mode of commutation. Keeping this in mind, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday promised to launch more than 2,000 buses in the national capital within one year. Kejriwal, who was attending the launch of social media strategist Ankit Lal’s book ‘India Social’, said that there was no reporting on the fare hike issue even after reports that Delhi Metro is losing its passengers. He said that launch of new buses was earlier delayed due to space issues.
Earlier, Union Minister for road transport and highways Nitin Gadkari on Thursday spoke on the issue of air pollution in Delhi and said that he wanted to cater the transportation needs by providing public transport that runs on pollution-free fuel. He added that this can be done by turning to ethanol, for which ministry is in talks with the Petroleum ministry. The Union minister explained that Ethanol is cheap and produced from sugar molasses. Instead of burning rice or cotton straw, the farmers will be able to sell the stubble to thousands of units the government will set up.”One tonne of paddy waste is equal to 180 litres of ethanol. I will stop the practice of importing fuel and instead make India create indigenous fuel. I have been working on this for ten years now,” he said.
It is notable that government and private companies are trying to fight rising air pollution in urban centres of India. On November 20, government-owned Oil company, IndianOil along with cab aggregator Ola inaugurated its first electric charging station at one of the company owned fuel stations in Nagpur. Nagpur, being the first city to introduce Electric Public Transportation Model in India, has added one more feather to its cap by adding the first Electric Charging Station at Indian Oil’s COCO fuel station in the city.