The constantly worsening situation of air pollution in Delhi has led the government to jump ahead of schedule in the use of BS VI (BS6) grade fuels for vehicles, two years ahead of the scheduled deadline for implementation of Bharat Stage VI emission norms. Currently, vehicles in the country follow BS IV (BS4) emission norms which were introduced in the country earlier this year. However, looking to mitigate the deteriorating air quality including the recent smog that covered Delhi, the ministry of petroleum and natural gas has decided to prepone the use of BS VI fuel in the national capital territory of New Delhi from April 2018. The actual deadline for manufacturers to meet the BS VI norms is April 2020. But automakers are not worried by the early use of BS VI as the current BS IV-compliant vehicles can also run on BS VI fuel without any problem. Just last week, it was announced that the Odd-Even car use system would return to Delhi for five days to reduce air pollution.
Traffic drives through smog in Delhi on November 7.
The problem of pollution in major cities of the country, especially in Delhi, is not new. Earlier, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has ordered for all diesel vehicles with engine capacity of more than 2,000cc and older than 10 years to be taken off the streets in Delhi. Meanwhile, the government is also in talks with Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) to see if it is possible for the use of BS VI fuels across all fuel stations of the National Capital Region (NCR), which includes Noida and Gurugram by April 1, 2019.
Auto industry body SIAM welcomed the move saying that the early availability of BS VI fuel will ensure that such quality of fuel will be available across the country when the industry moves only BS VI-compliant vehicles in April 2020. It will also give manufacturers a chance to test their BS VI vehicles with this fuel and further validate them, it added.
Image credit: Reuters