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Experts hail ‘Green Budget’, but scepticism remains

Experts hail ‘Green Budget’, but scepticism remains

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NEW DELHI: The ‘Green Budget’ presented by the Delhi government is ambitious, but needs proper implementation and must go beyond rhetoric, policy experts and environmentalists in the Capital have asserted.

Many have observed that it is promising to see such emphasis on tackling air pollution in the Green Budget; but what remains is the implementation of these announcements.

“The budget looks like a mixed bag. It shows promises to strengthen the public transport sector adding 3,000 (1,000 each for CNG, electric and cluster) new buses to the fleet along with creating associated enabling infrastructure,” said an expert.

He further noted that the push towards electric vehicles, both in public and private transportation, and the government’s intent to shift large two-wheelers base to EV shows promise that “we have started thinking about reducing our oil dependence.”

“Publicly sharing the pollution levels data on screens and forecasting system, along with real-time source apportionment to be completed in the coming financial year, is a good move,” noted the expert.

He further said that it is good to see emission reduction targets to tackle air pollution in the 2018-19 budget.

However, environmentalist Pujarini Sen cautioned, “Where the Green Budget is weak is with regards to renewable energy. The proposed budget is rehashing old promises, like net metering and generation-based incentives. In both these aspects, there has been little progress in the past years.”

“There is only a year left for the earmarked period for generation-based incentives, yet the government has not done enough to promote the policy or solar. A strong promotional push is required from their side urgently,” Sen added.

Some experts noted that given the state’s poor rollout of solar energy sources so far, despite having released a strong policy two years ago, a close eye needs to be kept on implementation post this budget, to see whether or not it delivers. Solar over cycling tracks is a novel thought, as is agri-solar.

The centre has also announced schemes on agri-solar in its Budget, and hopefully in Delhi, given the state Govt’s announcements now, there will be a stronger push towards this. But without effective implementation, this will not “trickle up” as the government intends, experts believe.

“Implementing the renewable energy commitments are going to be critical towards reducing air pollution in the state and the country. We hope the government is serious this time around,” noted an expert.

Source: millenniumpost.in
Anand Gupta Editor - EQ Int'l Media Network

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