India has temporarily banned the use of diesel gensets for non-essential services in the capital of New Delhi in a bid to improve air quality with the onset of winter.
The ban was part of a package of measures introduced towards the end of last month— when the capital’s air quality index dropped to the "very poor" category— and is set to remain in force until mid-March 2018.
India’s Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) said the ban on diesel gensets was being implemented only in New Delhi rather than the entire National Capital Region— which currently has no “suitable alternatives for back-up power”.
According to The Times of India, the ban does not apply to essential services such as hospitals, telecoms towers and the metro system. “However, generators can't be used at weddings, housing societies and malls,” the paper quoted an EPCA official as saying.
The EPCA has said studies show New Delhi’s residents are more exposed to “significantly higher” levels of air pollutants during the colder months of winter than in summer.
Other “anti-pollution measures” introduced by the EPCA include the closure of brick kilns not using pollution control technology, the mechanised sweeping of roads, closure of the Badarpur fossil fuel power plant and monitoring of trucks entering New Delhi.