The H.P. State Pollution Control Board is a nodal agency in the administrative structure of the State Government, for the planning, promotion, coordination and overseeing the implementation of environmental programs. It was about three decades now that the foundation of the current direction on Environment Protection was laid and a legislative base initially formed at the national level to protect the environment from the adverse impacts of rapidly expanding industrial society. The legislative & technological bases have substantially expanded in the subsequent period primarily necessitated by the agglomeration and magnification of the problems resultant to the development for outpacing the capabilities to resolve them.
A beginning made in the mid-seventies encompassing and integrating environmental concerns in a comprehensive national policy proved quite useful with a tangible degree of success in the subsequent years with highly manifest forms of environmental pollution and other significant concerns of immediate nature. This prompted constant policy and legislative reviews making suitable amendments wherever necessary to protect the nation from the lurking threat of environmental degradation. Over these years a continuous effort has been made by the Board to expand its activities to fulfil the demands of emerging ecological concerns, challenges and new statutes. The principal activities undertaken by H.P. State Pollution Control Board consist of prevention & control of pollution, protection of environment, in the framework of following legislation.
Water (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1974: The Parliament in the 25th year of the Republic promulgated this legislation in pursuance to Clause - 1 of Article 252 of the Constitution of India, with the objective of prevention and control of water pollution and maintenance and restoration of wholesomeness of water. The H.P. State Pollution Control Board was constituted in 1974 under the provisions of this Act.
Water (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977: This Act provides for levy of cess on the water consumed for specific purposes with a view to dissuade wasteful and indiscreet use of water.
Air (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1981: On the analogy of the Water (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 the Union Government promulgated another identical legislation which was exclusively meant to deal with the problems of air quality and preservation and maintenance thereof.
Environment (Protection) Act, 1986: In order to provide the existing legislation for the control of water and air pollution more effectively and to remove the deficiency of this legislation, the Union Government enacted another umbrella legislation in the 37th Year of Republic. The prime objective of the legislation was to plug the existing statutory gaps whereby tremendous responsibilities by way of functions have been entrusted to the State Board.
The following prominent rules and notifications are significant in context to the role and functions of the H.P. State Pollution Control Board: -
- Manufacture, Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemical Rules, 1989.
- The Hazardous Waste (Management & Handling) Rules, 1989/2000
- Rules for Manufacture, Use, Import, Export, and Storage of Hazardous Microorganism, Genetically Engineered Organisms or Cells, 1989.
- Noise Pollution (Control and Regulation) Rules, 1999.
- Biomedical Wastes (Management & Handling) Rules, 1998.
- Recycled Plastics Manufacture and Usage Rules, 1999/2003.
- Municipal Solid Wastes (Management & Handling) Rules, 2000.
- Ozone Depleting Substances (Regulation & Control) Rules, 2000.
- Batteries (Management & Handling) Rules, 2000.
Objectives of HPPCB
Sustainable Development: - Sustainable development is a wide concept that balances the need for economic growth with environmental protection and social equity.
Prevention: - To control the prevention of natural resources.
Waste Management: - Effective Waste Management is a great source to protect the environment.
Consumer awareness: - Pollution can be reduced by awareness such as by convincing general public to use CFL, paper bags, public transport and not to use firecrackers, plastic bags or any other non-biodegradable products.
Compliance: - HPPCB laid down some guidelines for industries and Health care establishment to reduce environment pollution in Uttar Pradesh.
Main Functions of the HPPCB
- Provide recommendation to the Himachal Pradesh Government on any matter concerning prevention and control of water and air pollution and improvement of the quality of air.
- Organize the consumer awareness programs on the prevention and control of air and water pollution and waste management through mass media.
- Collect, compile and prepare technical and statistical data related to air and water pollution.
- Lay down the standard of sewage and trade effluents and for emission from industrial plant, automobiles and Health Care Establishment.
- To help on the development of new technology for treatment of sewage, trade effluents and control equipment.
- Issuance of consent certificate to industries falling in different categories such as Red, Orange, Green and White.
- Issuance of the Authorization to industries and health care establishments, falling in Bio-Medical waste Authorization, Hazardous waste Management Authorization, Plastic Waste Management, Battery waste Management, and E-waste Authorization.
GPCB Categories & Classification of Business Activities
The industries in HP has been classified in Red, Orange, and Green category as per the list, indicating the classification of 649 industries as per new guidelines.
The industries categorized under Red, Orange and Green category only need to apply for Consent to Establish (CTE) and Consent to Operate (CTO) under the Air & Water Act. The industries categorized under white category are not required to obtain Consent to establish and operate, it is required only to intimate Himachal Pradesh Pollution Control Board (HPPCB) within 30 days from Establishment of business with an undertaking.