The Delhi government on Monday, October 18, kickstarted its 'Red Light On, Gaadi Off' campaign in an attempt to curb air pollution in the national capital.
"From Monday, October 18, we are starting the "Red Light on Car Off" campaign against the pollution caused by vehicles in Delhi," informed Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai.
The campaign tells people to switch off the engines of their vehicles as soon as they stop at a red light. The government introduced it first in 2020 and the first phase will run for a month till November 18, Hindustan Times reported.
Rai said that the initiative will take place in two shifts— one from 8 in the morning till 2 pm and the second from 2 pm to 8 pm.
As per the government's plan, the campaign will be carried out at 100 traffic intersections across 13 police districts. Around 2,500 civil defence volunteers will also be deployed for its effective implementation. These volunteers will work as 'Paryavaran Marshals' across the city and will distribute pamphlets with details of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's appeal to make the campaign a success.
Kejriwal's Appeal To People
Kejriwal, on October 12, had urged people of Delhi not to take their vehicles once a week and rather travel on the metro, bus or share their vehicles with others.
The CM said that switching vehicles off at red light can help in curbing pollution levels by 13 per cent and ₹2500 crores can be saved annually. "Around 10 million vehicles are registered in Delhi. Even if one million of them actively follow the campaign, experts suggest that it can reduce PM10 emissions by 1.5 tonnes a year and PM2.5 emissions by 0.4 tonnes a year," he said. The CM added that idling (waiting at a traffic signal with engine on) consumes more fuel than a normal drive. On average, a car is left idling for around 15 to 20 minutes a day, and that ends up exhausting at least 200 ml of fuel.
He also appealed to people to download the Green Delhi app and complain against the vehicle or industry that is causing pollution.
Meanwhile, Delhi Environment Minister said that the reason behind the poor air quality in the national capital is the rising incidents of stubble burning in neighbouring states. He also urged the governments of these states to show a responsible approach.