Central Pollution Control Board: Functions, Powers, Programme, Structure

By Durga Prashanna Mishra|Updated : November 24th, 2022

CPCB stands for Central Pollution Control Board, and it is an organization under the Government of India. CPCB is responsible for monitoring the Air and Water Quality and the pollution-related issues in India. The pollution Control Board in India is one of the most crucial government bodies under the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC).

CPCB UPSC Topic finds its relevance in the IAS Syllabus under the Polity and Government and Environment & Ecology section. UPSC aspirants must have adequate knowledge of CPCB to answer all the questions asked in this section with ease. In the CPCB UPSC notes, we will be covering the responsibilities, powers, structure, and crucial facts related to the Central Pollution Control Board.

What is CPCB?

CPCB (Central Pollution Control Board) is a statutory organization that was established in September 1974 under the Water (Prevention and Control Pollution) Act, 1974. After that CPCB was entrusted with the functions and powers of the Air (Prevention and Control Pollution) Act 1981.

  • This pollution control board in India serves as a field formation and also offers technical services to the Ministry of Environment and Forests under the provisions of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
  • The major function of the CPCB is to promote the cleanliness of the wells and streams in various areas of states by controlling, preventing, and abatement of water pollution. 
  • Further CPCB aims to enhance the air quality and prevent, abate, or control the air pollution in India.

Pollution Control Board in India

Let’s take a look at the latest updates on Central Pollution Control Board

  • Recently, CPCB celebrated the 46th Foundation Day 
  • As per the CPCB, there are 128 sites in India contaminated by hazardous and toxic substances. West Bengal topped the list with 27 sites followed by Odish at 23.

The reasons for contamination include:

  • leakage of underground oil pipelines of Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited in Tamil Nadu. 
  • Heavy metal and pesticide contamination in creeks at Eloor, Kerala.
  • Chromium contamination at Ranipet, Tamil Nadu, Rania, and Loguanagar, Uttar Pradesh.
  • Mercury contamination of the soil at Kodaikanal, Ganjam, Tamil Nadu, Odisha
  • Electronic waste on the banks of fiver Moradabad, Ramganga.

Functions and Powers of CPCB

CPCB has the following functions and powers

  • Advise the central government on matters concerning the control and prevention of water and air pollution and enhancement of air and water quality.
  • The responsibility of CPCB includes planning training programs for people involved in the activities for improvement, prevention, and control of water and air pollution.
  • CPCB provides technical support and guidance to the state boards and carries out sponsor research and investigation related to the problems of air and water pollution, and for their control, prevention and abatement.
  • CPCB also Organizes mass awareness programs on the control and prevention of air and water pollution.
  • Preparing guidelines, manuals, and codes for the treatment of sewage and trade effluents and also stack gas cleaning devices.
  • Another responsibility of CPCB includes collecting statistical and annual reports related to Water & Air pollution. This report helps to take preventive measures to reduce and control pollution.
  • CPCB also performs other functions as prescribed by the Indian Government.

CPCB AQI - National Air Quality Monitoring Programme (NAMP) 

CPCB (Central Pollution Control Board) launched a nationwide programme called National Air Quality Monitoring Programme (NAMP) to tack air quality index India .The objectives of NAMP are:

  • To find out the trends and status of ambient air quality
  • To figure out whether the prescribed air quality standards are violated
  • To locate the non-attainment cities and control the air pollution in those cities
  • To get enough understanding and knowledge required for developing corrective and preventive measures.
  • To understand the cleansing process undergoing in the environment.
  • NAMP regularly measures the SO2, NO2, RSPM / PM10

CPCB - National Water Quality Monitoring Programme (NWMP) 

Water is an essential and limited resource for human existence. CPCB collects technical and statistical data related to water pollution, and also takes various measures to control water pollution. The CPCB in association with State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs) / Pollution Control Committees(PPCs) monitors the water quality across the country under the NWMP.

  • The water quality monitoring network- 28 states, and 8 union territories have a total of 4111 stations
  • Groundwater is monitored on a half-year basis
  • Surface water bodies are monitored quarterly or monthly
  • Micropollutants- monitored twice a year( Before or after monsoon)

Organizational Structure of CPCB

Central Pollution Control Board is led by its chairman, member secretary, and other members. Various tasks are performed by CPCB through the following nine project heads.

  1. Pollution assessment (survey and monitoring).
  2. R&D and laboratory management.
  3. Information database management and library
  4. Pollution control technology
  5. Pollution control enforcement
  6. Mass awareness and publications
  7. Hazard waste management
  8. Development of standards and guidelines for industry-specific emissions and effluent standards
  9. Training


CPCB or Central Pollution Control Board must be researched properly as it is a part of the UPSC Syllabus. CPCB comes under both UPSC Prelims and UPSC Mains, which makes this topic crucial from the UPSC exam perspective. UPSC aspirants must go through the CPCB UPSC notes to strengthen their preparation for the upcoming UPSC exam.

Apart from the notes candidates need to have the right UPSC Books by their side to build a strong foundation of the topics as well. Applicants can also solve UPSC Previous Year Question Papers to gain a better understanding of kinds of questions asked. 


CPCB is a major part of the GS-3 paper of the UPSC Mains syllabus. That is why advise candidates to download the PDF file of the CPCB UPSC notes and take a printout which would make their preparation easier.

>>Download CPCB UPSC Notes PDF

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  • CPCB stands for Central Pollution Control Board. This is a pollution control board in India that aims to boost the cleanliness of streams and wells in various locations of the states with control, prevention, and abatement of the water pollution. Additionally, it improves the air quality to control, and prevent air pollution in the country.

  • Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has the power to advise the central government on matters related to the control and prevention of air and water pollution and to enhance the quality of both water and air. The responsibility of CPCB includes organizing mass awareness programs to control air and water pollution. Additionally, it makes statistical reports for water and air pollution and takes preventive measures on the basis of the reports.

  • There are two major functions of CPCB- the first one is to increase the cleanliness of wells and streams in different areas of the state, and take preventive measures against water pollution. The second major function is to improve the air quality and control the air pollution in India.

  • Central Pollution Control Board is led by the chairman and the member secretary, and other members of the CPCB.

  • Yes, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) is a statutory body that was constituted in September 1974 under the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974. 

  • CPCB is a pollution control board in India, that consists of 621 stations in 29 states and 5 union territories in the country.

  • The objectives of CPCB include- helping consumers to become environmentally friendly in their lives by giving information on how their purchase decisions have an impact on environmental factors. Also to encourage the citizens to purchase products that are less harmful to the environment.

  • The Central Pollution Control Board headquarter is located in New Delhi.

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