STATE

KSPCB scores 50+ pc in transparency index

By Express News Service

BENGALURU: The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) report released on Thursday listed Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) in its transparency list of 14 states. 

The report ‘Transparency Index — Rating of Pollution Control Boards on Public Disclosure’, assessed the data disclosed in public domain by Pollution Control Boards (PCB) of 29 states and six Pollution Control Committees (PCC). Based on the report, 14 boards scored above 50 per cent.

They are Odisha, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Goa, Karnataka, Haryana, Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Kerala, Maharashtra, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan.

The analysis cited that most agencies are not transparent enough with information in the public domain. Information on functioning, actions taken by boards against polluting industries, public hearing data on new projects etc are rarely disclosed, or are not even available on public websites.  

For instance, only nine SPCBs or PCCs have provided detailed information on public hearings, which includes the executive summary, draft EIA report of the project, and minutes of the meeting. The states are Karnataka, Telangana, Delhi, Gujarat, Kerala, Punjab, Rajasthan, Goa and Mizoram.

Karnataka was on the list of five Boards sharing inspection information, along with Himachal Pradesh, Odisha, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal. The report also pointed out that only 19 states  displayed the continuous emission monitoring system (CEMS) data, and Karnataka was not in this list. 

Nivit Kumar Yadav, programme director, Industrial Pollution Unit, CSE, said, “State PCBs are entrusted with several functions. One of these is to collect and disseminate information related to air and water pollution and also its prevention, control or abatement. The law asks the Boards to share data in public domain. But this is rarely done.”

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