Green tribunal raises stink over sea link

Says air and noise pollution have risen in Worli and authorities are shifting blame.

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It sure cuts down your commute time and offers you a scenic drive, but the Bandra-Worli sea link is causing severe air and noise pollution. And public agencies are shrugging their responsibility to keep pollution in check.
This observation by the National Green Tribunal was released on Wednesday while hearing a plea by Worli resident Dileep Nevatia. It blamed the rising number of vehicles for increasing pollution at Worli sea face. At least 40,000 vehicles use the bridge daily.
“Each party is shifting liability to some other authority... there is no denial to the fact that heavy traffic on the sea link causes air pollution...” the tribunal said.
In 2010, MPCB’s air quality report stated that pollution (in microgram) was 2051 against a normal of 200. A 2009 study at a ‘residential’ zone in Worli said noise levels saw a high of 115.3 decibels against a normal of 65.
The tribunal pinned responsibility of preventing pollution on three public agencies – union environment ministry, Maharashtra government and its pollution control board (MPCB). Besides, other agencies in the dock include the state road agency (MSRDC), state police and metro region’s development agency (MMRDA).
Nevatia told DNA that the tribunal’s observation was a first step to ensure that pollution is restored to acceptable levels.

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