Indian environment ministry plans online portal for green content

By Editor


India could see an online portal dedicated to environment and forest issues in the near future. Minister for environment Prakash Javadekar has announced the proposal at an event on waste management. reports that the government also proposes to set aside a one-hour slot on DD Kisan, the channel dedicated to programs promoting and supporting agriculture, for environment-related content.

Javadekar said a dedicated television channel was not being considered at present owing to the high costs involved.

Last month, the environment minister had highlighted some of the initiatives the ministry had taken under him.

One of the initiatives Javadekar highlighted was the online facility for industries to apply for environmental, forest and wildlife clearances for Category A projects. In a year since the launch of the project the ministry received 3,200 applications, the minister stated.

Yesterday the ministry expanded the system for Category B projects. It launched a web portal for online submission of applications for environment clearance by state environment impact assessment authorities for Category B projects.

Applications under Category B projects were not being dealt by the ministry directly. They were handled at the state level.

The introduction of the new system is expected to increase transparency and expedite disposal without compromising upon the rigour of environment clearance, according to a statement. As many as 19 states have joined the system.

The ministry also has plans to bring clearances covered by Hazardous Substances Management Rules online.

Earlier, the government had approved demarcation of 222 eco-sensitive zones around protected areas as part of afforestation of degraded forest land.

The ministry also approved the revision of national forest policy and online monitoring of polluting industries.

Recently the government launched the national air quality index which continuously keeps track of pollution levels in major cities of India.

One other project was the introduction of stringent norms for the cement industry and new rules for waste management.

Javadekar had then said that a bill seeking tougher penalties for violation of environmental laws was being circulated among central ministries for consultation.

Ajith Kumar S

[email protected]

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