With the increase in the levels of pollution in the air, the need for air quality management arose, which led to the formation of the Commission for Air Quality Management.
The Commission for Air Quality Management or the CAQM became constituted in National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas, Act 2021. CAQM's ambition is to coordinate, study and give answers to air quality-associated troubles in NCR and surrounding areas.
Before the CAQM came into force, the air quality was monitored by several bodies such as Central Pollution Control Board, Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA), the state pollution control board. However, with this Act, CAQM will now consolidate all these bodies. This was done to avoid confusion and to increase efficiency.
Constitution of the Commission for Air Quality Management [CAQM]
The CAQM constitutes of One ex-officio representative from the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India, Five ex-officio Members from Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh, four full-time members, one full-time secretary, one ex-officio technical member from Central Pollution Control Board, one ex-officio technical member from ISRO, three members from NGOs, one representative from National Institution for Transforming India, three stakeholder members from agriculture, industry, transport or construction sectors headed by a full-time Chairperson.
Powers and Functions of the CAQM
Following are the various powers and functions of the CAQM:
- To inspect any building, premises, plant, machinery, or manufacturing process.
- To plan and execute programs to improve the air quality index.
- Preparation of manifestos, codes, and guidelines to control air pollution.
- Laying down guidelines for discharge of pollutants into the air.
- Giving directions and orders to persons to control and prevent air pollution.
CAQM even has the power to order for closure, prohibit or regulate any Industry if it thinks that such an order is necessary to safeguard the air quality.
Consequences of Non-compliance
Non-compliance or violation of this Act may lead to:
- imprisonment for a term up to five years or
- fine which may extend up to Rs 1 crore or
Sub-Committees of Commission for Air Quality Management [CAQM]
The Commission for Air Quality Management comprises three sub-committees:
- Sub-Committee on Monitoring and Identification
- Sub-Committee on Safeguarding and Enforcement
- Sub-Committee on Research and Development
FAQs on the Commission for Air Quality Management [CAQM]
Q.1. Where is the headquarters of the CAQM located?
The headquarters of the Commission for Air Quality Management [CAQM] is located in Delhi.
Q.2. What is the jurisdiction of the Commission for Air Quality Management [CAQM]?
The CAQM has jurisdiction over the National Capital Territory of Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan, Punjab, and Uttar Pradesh.
Q.3. Under which Ordinance was Commission for Air Quality Management [CAQM] formed?
The CAQM was formed by the Ordinance, “Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) in National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas Ordinance 2020."
Q.4. Can CAQM take up any matter suo-moto?
The Commission for Air Quality Management [CAQM] has the power to take up any matter suo-motto or based on a complaint made to it.