ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronEye IconIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailMenu BurgerPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon SearchSite TitleTitle ChevronIcon Twitter
Economy

Smog-bound New Delhi getting low-emissions fuel early

India's capital set for world-class standards in 2018, two years before other areas

A street cleaner works in heavy smog in Delhi, India on Nov.10, 2017.   © Reuters

NEW DELHI -- India will bring lower-emissions auto fuels to New Delhi two years ahead of schedule as the capital region's air pollution steadily worsens.

Gasoline and diesel fuel across the country currently conform to vehicle emissions standards known as Bharat Stage 4. Fuels meeting tougher BS-6 standards -- the government is skipping over BS-5 entirely -- were slated for nationwide introduction in April 2020. BS-6 is equivalent to the latest set of European emissions restrictions and held to be the global standard.

But the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas said Nov. 15 that the capital city would get the new fuels early, in April 2018. The surrounding national capital region could see BS-6 grade fuels a year later.

The Delhi region's intense air pollution problem seems to have pushed the ministry into action. Air quality there tends to deteriorate each year in late October, prompting residents to don face masks when outdoors and motorcyclists to obscure their faces with scarves from the nose down. Buildings along the city's highways, even massive shopping malls, grow blurry in the noxious haze. This year, the fire department was even called on to spray down trees in an effort to provide relief.

BS-6 fuel will contain less substances such as sulfur that contribute to smog, and will help curb overall exhaust output, lowering fuels' contribution to air pollution.

The accelerated timeline for fuels has drawn praise from automakers. If car companies can get their hands on BS-6 grade fuel in New Delhi, they will have an easier time testing vehicles that are supposed to meet those standards, explained Abhay Firodia, president of the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers.

Vehicles complying with those world-class standards can be shipped to a host of global markets without running afoul of local regulations. Japan's Honda Motor plans to make India a global export hub for motorbikes once BS-6 takes effect. While India's snap policy decisions -- demonetization and the introduction of a goods and services tax, to name a few -- have often led to whiplash in the past, businesses and citizens alike look to ride out the latest change not only unscathed, but healthier for it.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Get Unlimited access

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends June 30th

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to the Nikkei Asian Review has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media