Environmental Policies in the 90's
The 90ís heralded trade liberalization and Globalization. Since 1991 India has adopted new economic policies to spur development. In an effort to integrate the Indian economy with global trade, the government has reduced industrial regulation, lowered international trade and investment barriers and encouraged export-oriented enterprise.
In December 1993, the MoEF completed its Environmental Action Plan to integrate environmental considerations into developmental strategies, which, among other priorities, included industrial pollution reduction.
The MoEF also decided to shift from concentration to load-based standards. This would add to a polluterís costs and remove incentives to dilute effluents by adding water, and strengthen incentives for adoption of cleaner technologies. It also issued water consumption standards, which were an additional charge for excessive water use. Targeting small-scale industries has been an important task since these facilities greatly added to the pollution load. The Ministry provides technical assistance and limited grants to promote the setting up of central effluent treatment plants. It has also created industrial zones to encourage clusters of similar industries in order to help reduce the cost of providing utilities and environmental services.