Strongly emphasizing the Government’s commitment to address various issues related to air quality and pollution, Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, has said that along with the initiatives taken by the Government, the participation of the society is an imperative. Launching the air quality early warning system for Delhi, here today, Dr. Harsh Vardhan pointed out that with an outlay of Rs. 1151.80 crore under the new Central Sector Scheme, the Centre has already released Rs. 591.65 crore to Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and NCT of Delhi for the promotion of agricultural mechanization for in-situ management of crop residue.Calling the 41 teams of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) as the ‘eyes and ears’ of MoEF&CC, the Minister stated that these teams have been deployed in Delhi and NCR cities of Ghaziabad, NOIDA, Gurugram and Faridabad to monitor and supervise dust mitigation and other air pollution abatement measures to ensure effective compliance. He also pointed out that Badarpur thermal power plant is being closed from October 15, 2018 and the number of mechanized road sweeping machines in Delhi will increase from 52 to 64 by the end of November 2018. He also averred that the use of water sprinklers and the opening of Western Peripheral Expressway will bring about a further reduction in pollution.In his remarks, Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri C.K Mishra, said that the number of Good, Satisfactory And Moderate days is 157 in 2018 (Up to October 13) compared to 150 in 2017 and 107 in 2016 duringthe corresponding period. He added that similarly, the number of Poor, Very Poor and Severe days have come down from 167 in 2016 to 136 in 2017 to 129 in 2018 (Up to 13th October) during the corresponding period.