Union Government unveils Green Highways Policy 2015
Union Government has launched Green Highways (Plantation, Transplantation, Beautification & Maintenance) Policy-2015 to promote greening of National Highway corridors across the country.
The policy was unveiled by Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi.
Key features of Green Highways Policy 2015
- Promote greening and development eco-friendly National Highway corridors across the country with participation of farmers, private sector and government institutions including Forest Department.
- It will address the issues that lie in the road of development and pave the way towards sustainable development.
- Objective: To reduce the impact of air pollution and dust by planting trees and shrubs along the National Highways. They will act as natural sink for air pollutants and arrest soil erosion at the embankment slopes.
- Stake holders: Contracts for greening highways will be given to NGOS, agencies, private companies and government organisations. These stakeholders will be responsible for the survival and health of trees.
- Planting of trees in any particular area will depend on the soil suitability and climatic conditions.
- Monitoring Agency: It will be responsible for monitoring the plantation status on continuous basis by carrying out the site visit for field verification to check survival, growth and size of plantation and maintenance of the same.
- Performance audit of executing agencies will be regularly conducted by the agency on an Annual basis. New contracts will be awarded to the agencies based on their past performance audit.
Implications: The policy will strike a balance between highways development and environmental protection. It will also help in providing employment to 5 lakh people of the rural areas.