The Centre has informed National Green Tribunal that action plan for 37 railway stations which are to be developed as "eco-smart stations" will be implemented in three months. The Centre told a bench led by the NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel that nodal officers have been identified by the railway administration to oversee the implementation of environmental management systems at the 37 stations.
"They will also act as regulators for environment norms and will have authority to lay down and collect compensation on Polluter Pays' principle. They will be authorized to issue receipts for the compensation so recovered. This mechanism will be put on the website," Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand, appearing for the Railways, told the NGT.
Taking the submissions into consideration, the tribunal said that the action plans with regard to the next phase should be prepared for all the remaining major stations and should indicate phase-wise steps and categories of implementation.
"The action plans may have categories for a number of stations for different phases but all the major stations should be covered within one year on the pattern of 37 major stations already identified".
The tribunal also gave insights on its development of de-centralized municipal solid waste plants.
"We also expect that de-centralized municipal solid waste plants may be set up at the identified locations in terms of Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016. The Executive Director, Environment and Health Management (ENHM), Railway Headquarters, may compile the progress of execution of action plans periodically and also lay down adverse consequences for the nodal officers or others who fail to execute the action plans within the targeted timeline by way of entry into their annual reports," it said.
It also informed about the railway board might be compiling the data of preparation of action plans for the remaining major stations within three months and furnish the same to the Central Pollution Control Board for analysis.
"If the CPCB finds that action plan has been duly implemented and selected railway stations are meeting the parameters of ISO 14001, such stations may be certified as eco-smart stations," the tribunal added.
(With PTI inputs)