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Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP)

Topics Covered: Pollution and conservation related issues.

Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP):


The air quality of Delhi and Noida continued to be in the ‘severe’ category for the sixth consecutive day.

So, the newly formed Commission on Air Quality Management, as an interim measure, has given the CPCB powers to operationalise measures under the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) on air pollution.

 What is GRAP?

The GRAP is a set of emergency measures to be implemented to control air pollution depending upon the air quality.

  • Approved by the Supreme Court in 2016.
  • The plan was prepared by Environment Pollution (Prevention & Control) Authority.
  • It works only as an emergency measure.
  • When the air quality shifts from poor to very poor, the measures listed have to be followed since the plan is incremental in nature.

 Overview of the plan:

  1. The plan requires action and coordination among 13 different agencies in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan (NCR areas).
  2. At the head of the table is the EPCA, mandated by the Supreme Court.
  3. Before the imposition of any measures, EPCA holds a meeting with representatives from all NCR states, and a call is taken on which actions has to be made applicable in which town.


About the Commission on Air Quality Management:

Set up through the ‘Commission for Air Quality Management in National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas Ordinance 2020’ in October this year.

  • The Commission will supersede bodies such as the central and state pollution control boards of Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, UP and Rajasthan.
  • It will have the powers to issue directions to these state governments on issues pertaining to air pollution.


It will be a permanent body and will have over 20 members.

Chairperson: To be chaired by a government official of the rank of Secretary or Chief Secretary.


Exclusive jurisdiction over the NCR, including areas in Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, in matters of air pollution, and will be working along with CPCB and ISRO, apart from the respective state governments.


Prelims Link:

  1. Is EPCA a statutory body?
  2. When and why was it established?
  3. Powers and functions.
  4. Composition.
  5. What is the Graded Response Action Plan?
  6. Overview of the ‘Commission for Air Quality Management in National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas Ordinance 2020’.

Sources: the Hindu.