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Review of comprehensive air quality action plan: Kolkata

Cities with poor air quality across India, which do not match the National Ambient Air Quality Standards of 2009, have been identified as non-attainment cities. They have been ordered to form “city action plans” for reducing air pollution levels and meeting the standards within six months. Committees constituted by their respective state governments have formulated action plans for non-attainment cities, which serve as a roadmap for specific tasks to be performed. This report is a review of such a plan prepared for Kolkata. It offers a critique of the policy measures pushed through the city action plan. Secondary literature analysis finds that Kolkata’s action plan takes a city-centric approach to demarcate pollution sources while ignoring major emissions from nearby industrial regions. This process is faulty—emissions outside city limits have a significant role to play in its overall air quality.