• Wednesday, Sep 30, 2020
  • Last Update : 01:32 am

Merkel urges Delhi to go green amid smog emergency

  • Published at 08:33 pm November 2nd, 2019
INDIA-GERMANY/
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi gesture during their visit to Gandhi Smriti in New Delhi, India, November 1, 2019 Reuters

Delhi has faced a mounting pollution crisis over the past decade

Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel urged greater efforts to clean up New Delhi's toxic air as she pledged one billion euros to help Indian cities switch to green transport.

Merkel became a rare foreign leader to speak out on India's smog crisis after being exposed to the capital's air on Friday, when authorities said the pollution had reached "emergency" levels.

Schools were ordered closed until Tuesday and all construction halted, while Delhi authorities started distributing millions of anti-pollution masks to children.

The same day, Merkel went on a ceremonial parade in the city with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday as the smog intensified. 

Neither leader wore masks despite authorities telling residents to stay indoors to avoid the haze.

Merkel said that Germany would spend €1 billion on "green" urban transport projects in India over the next five years, including €200 million to replace diesel buses in Tamil Nadu state.

"These diesel buses are to be replaced by electric buses and anyone who saw the pollution in Delhi yesterday would find very good arguments for replacing even more of these buses," Merkel said in the widely reported speech.

Much of the new peak in the most dangerous PM 2.5 pollutants - particulates smaller than 2.5 microns that get into the lungs and bloodstream - has been blamed on fires lit by farmers to burn off wheat crop residues outside of the capital.

Higher winds improved air quality yesterday but pollution remained "severe," according to government monitors.

Delhi has faced a mounting pollution crisis over the past decade.

Fourteen Indian cities including the capital are among the world's top 15 most polluted cities, according to the United Nations. 

According to one study, smog kills a million Indians prematurely every year. 

51
50
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail