New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed the governments of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan to ban the use of pet coke and furnace oil in the industries and made it clear that their failure to do so would force it to ban these materials from November 1. A bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta, which slapped a fine of Rs two lakh on union environment ministry for not finalising pollution emission standards for industries using pet coke and furnace oil in the national capital region (NCR), asked the three states to ban the use of these pollution causing materials.
The bench made it clear that it would ban the use of pet coke and furnace oil in the three states from November 1 if the respective governments did not prohibit their use in the industries by then.
Advocate Aparajita Singh, who is assisting the court as amicus curiae in the matter, said the three states have been asked by the court to ban the use of pet coke and furnace oil in the industries.
Earlier, the apex court-appointed Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA), in its report to the top court, had recommended that “distribution, sale and use of furnace oil and pet coke would be strictly banned in NCR”.
The court, in its May 2 this year order, had noted that the use of furnace oil and pet coke was prohibited in Delhi.
The bench was also told that governments of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan had no objection if a ban was placed on the use of furnace oil and pet coke. It had granted them the liberty to place such ban.
The court was hearing a PIL filed in 1985 by environmentalist M C Mehta who had raised the issue of air pollution in the Delhi-NCR.
Earlier, the court was told about the ill-effects of pet coke and furnace oil used in the industries on ambient air and it was said that emissions from such units were highly toxic as these discharged high sulphur content.