Home World Delhi, champion of coal at COP26, now stops power plants due to smog

Delhi, champion of coal at COP26, now stops power plants due to smog

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India, which led the recent final blitz at COP26 to save coal, is now forced to close its coal plants. These are the dramatic paradoxes of climate change, the victims of which are often the countries that hold back the most decisions aimed at reversing the dramatic trend of climate change.

The smog that has been trapping the Indian capital region for days has reached such high levels that local authorities have had to run for cover. Schools closed indefinitely, suspension of construction works, entry ban for trucks that do not transport basic necessities and, above all, a stop order for 6 of the 11 coal-fired power plants that are located in the vicinity of the megalopolis. This was a few days after the Indian negotiators had imposed to remove the sentence of the COP26 final document on the “phase out” of coal sources, replacing it with “phase down” and sending colleagues into a rage. Europeans and Americans.

Coal is the fuel that powers around 70% of India’s electricity generation. But it is also by far the most polluting and therefore, in the face of the smog emergency, even Delhi was forced to intervene, especially after the Supreme Court ordered the immediate implementation of restrictive measures. In recent days, the air quality index in the capital has reached around 400, a level considered dangerous for health.

The Delhi region is notoriously highly polluted for much of the year. The air becomes particularly toxic in the winter months as farmers in neighboring states burn stubble from crops. And the fireworks during Diwali festival, which takes place around the same time, only worsen the air quality. Furthermore, the scarcity of wind traps pollutants in the lower atmosphere, further worsening the situation.

Smog out of control in New Delhi, schools and coal plants closed

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Among the other measures decided by the Commission for air management there is also the recommendation to encourage smart working for half of the employees of the companies. In the meantime, the air quality will remain very bad for a few days, pending the arrival of cold winds that should end the emergency next week. Until the next one arrives.

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