BS VI norms; Delhi pollution

BS VI norms; Delhi pollution

BS VI norms-Delhi pollution

Details on the topic “BS VI norms-Delhi pollution”

Prelims: General issues on Environmental ecology, Bio-diversity, and Climate Change

Mains: GS paper III: Conservation, environmental pollution, and degradation, environmental impact assessment. 

Significance of Prelims: BSES, geographical location of Delhi, emission norms, AIR QUALITY INDEX (AQI), SAFAR

Significance of Mains: the difference between BS IV and BS VI norms- Delhi Pollution, Committee Recommendations:


  • Recently, The Commission on Air Pollution has put a ban on the banning of the use of diesel four-wheelers that are not BS VI norms-Delhi pollution compliant, also the entry of trucks into Delhi.
  • Because  Delhi’s Air Quality Index (AQI) deteriorated to 450, which puts it just below the ‘severe plus’ category, the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) has invoked measures under Stage 4 of the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) with immediate effect. 

BS VI norms-Delhi pollution

Pic: BS VI norms-Delhi pollution

Bharat stage emission standards(BSES)

  • It is introduced in the year 2000.
  • They are set under the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change by the Central Pollution Control Board.
  • They are based on European (EURO) emission standards.
  • BSES are emission standards introduced by the Indian Government to check the output of air pollutants from internal combustion engines and Spark-ignition engine equipment, including motor vehicles.
  • These norms were come into effect in 2000 under “India 2000”.
  • Then it was followed by BS2 in 2001 and BS3 in 2005
  •  Saumitra Chaudhary committee in 2014, recommended Auto Fuel Vision Policy 2025, which has recommended implementation of  BS-IV (2017), BS-V (2019) and BS VI norms-Delhi pollution (2024) standards.
  • Government of India in 2016, the Indian government announced that the country would skip the BS-V norms altogether and adopt BS-VI by 2020

 Difference between BS-IV and BS-VI       


with the roll-out of Bharat Stage VI norms,

Diesel Particulate Filter (PDF) and

Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR)

are being introduced

It will come down to 10 ppm in BS-VI compliant

fuels and auto engines.

Real Driving Emission (RDE) was introduced in

India, for the 1st time with the implementation

of Bharat Stage VI emission norms.

It will measure a vehicle’s emission in

real-time conditions against laboratory conditions.

Sulphur traces in BS-IV fuel (50 ppm). nitrogen oxide level for BS6-grade diesel engines

and petrol engines will be brought down by

70% and 25%, respectively.

BS VI can bring PM in diesel cars down by 80 %
The new norms will bring down nitrogen oxides

from diesel cars by 70 % and in petrol cars by 25 %


What area unit is BSI, BSII, BSIII, BSIV, and BSVI emission norms?

  • These emission standards were set by the governing body Bharat Safety Emission Standard (BSEB)
  • To check the output of pollutants from vehicles plying on the road.
  • The BS stands for Bharat Stage and is suffixed with the iteration of the particular emission norms.
  • These emissions standards of India are based on the lines of European norms commonly known as EURO 2, EURO 3, and so on.
  • The 1st regulations with the moniker India 2000 were introduced in 2000, with the 2nd  and 3rd iterations introduced in 2001 and 2005 with the moniker BSII (BS2) and BSIII (BS3), respectively.
  • The fourth iteration BSIV or BS4 was introduced in 2017 and the delay between the introduction of BS3 and BS4 resulted in fast-tracking the BSVI or BS6 emission instead of BSV or BS5 norms.
  •  Each of these emission norms has stricter emission standards compared to its predecessors.

Committee Recommendations:

Mashelkar Committee

  • In 2002, the central government has  accepted the report submitted by the Mashelkar committee in 2022,
  • The report proposed a road map for the rollout of Euro-based emission norms in India.
  • The committee has also recommended a phased implementation of future norms, with regulations being implemented in major cities first and extended to the rest of the country after a few years.
  • National auto fuel policy was announced by the Commission based on the recommendation of the committee.
  • The road map for the implementation of the BS norms was laid out in 2010. 
  • The policy also created guidelines for auto fuels, reduction of Delhi air pollution from older vehicles, and R&D for air quality data creation and health administration. 
  •  Since October 2010, Bharat Stage (BS) III norms were implemented across the country.
  • BS-IV emission norms were put in place in 13 major cities from April 2010, and the entire country from April 2017.
  • The Central Government, in 2016 announced that the country would skip the BS-V norms altogether and adopt BS-VI norms by 2020.
  • Although, due to the unexpected rise of pollution level in Delhi, it was planned to introduce in 2018 only, which was protested by automobile companies, since they planned their policy according to the 2020 timeline.

Why Delhi is always polluted

  • Delhi being landlocked geography is one of the main causes of greater air pollution as compared to other cities.
  • The north-westerly winds approach from  Rajasthan, and often Pakistan and Afghanistan carry in the dust to the region.
  • The Great Himalayas obstruct the escape route of the air with dust particles.
  • This is the reason why the causes dust and pollutants settle in the region.
  • This is can be seen more prominently during the winters because of the high atmospheric pressure created in the region  (upward movement of air from the layers below is stopped).


It is an index that reports Delhi air quality on daily basis.

  • It also measures how the health of a living being affects, within a short time period.
  • The objective of this index is to assist people in knowing the quality of the local air and its impacts on their health.
  • The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) calculates the AQI of Delhi for five major air pollutants, for which national air quality standards have been established to safeguard public health. They are

Ground-level ozone

Particle pollution/particulate matter (PM2.5/pm 10)

Carbon Monoxide

Sulfur dioxide

Nitrogen dioxide

  •  The level of air pollution is greater higher the AQI level in Delhi value will be. Over the last three decades, this concept is widely adopted by many developed countries across the world.
  •  This index quickly disseminates air quality information in real time.
  • In India, The National Air Quality Quality (AQI) India was introduced on 17 September 2014 in New Delhi under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan by the then Environment Minister Shri Prakash Javadekar.

The main purpose

  • This Index compares the air quality of Delhi conditions at different locations/cities.
  • It also helps in identifying faulty standards and inadequate monitoring programs.
  • This index helps in inspecting the change in air quality (improvement or degradation).
  • This index provides information to the citizens about environmental conditions.
  •  It is especially useful for people suffering from illnesses aggravated or caused by air pollution.

 System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR) 

  • It is a national initiative, set up by the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) to check the quality of air in a metropolitan city, by measuring the overall pollution level and the location-specific air quality of the city.
  • the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) Pune, has indigenously introduced this system, and it is operationalized by the India Meteorological Department (IMD).
  • It is an integral part of India’s first Air Quality Early Warning System operational in Delhi.
  • It inspects all weather parameters like temperature, rainfall, humidity, wind speed, wind direction, UV radiation, and solar radiation.

Further readings 


Diseases caused by air pollution, and Prevention

 Atmospheric layers 

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 The Indian Express 

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