Pollution Issue to Haunt Again; Delhi-NCR Ply-Lam Units Fear Shutdown

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According to Ply Reporter’s ground reports, around 200 manufacturing units of plywood, block boards, flush doors, decorative veneers and laminates situated in Delhi- NCR region fear a forced halt to the production units for few weeks due to rising pollution levels and imminent effect on industrial activities. The units who are using boilers based on coal and biomas face the stoppage whenever the pollution level crosses red mark.

The fear is high and is a genuinely worrisome matter as, Plywood and Laminates industries have somehow revived their production after a prolonged covid lockdown. The productivity levels have improved gradually after July with arrival of workers force, and it has reached to almost Pre-Covid level in September month, but the rising pollution level in Delhi-NCR area has alerted the hundreds of plywood and laminates manufacturing units of fear of uncertainty and they are in fear to face a force shutdown due to depleting air quality due to pollution. Delhi NCR based plywood and mica manufacturers have been facing a closure of around 1 month during December-January since last two consecutive years. Expecting a similar step, the units are trying to produce maximum of their capacity as long as operations are continued.

The President of Delhi-NCR Plywood Manufacturers Association, Mr Vikas Khanna said, “It is very harsh act for units, and more severe this year if it happens because the plants have lost their entire 3 to 4 month of this financial year with forced shutdown that caused heavy losses, and above it, the pollution induced sword is hanging again, which will leave many of the units financially sick.”

Estimates suggest ‘there is a production loss in crores to these plants that can be counted as a significant contribution from this growing sector. The Delhi- NCR based plywood and laminates industry need a preventive course of action and switch to non-fossil fuel mode, include solar power and electricity options instead of using Petcoke or other polluting items in boiler. Plywood and Laminates industry said that they use fire wood and coal, which is not much hazardous for emission. The recent changes in NGT rule is now posing a challenge for entire ply and laminates manufacturing units of this area in future so shifting plants away from the marked territory is an imminent solution whether it comes sooner or later.

It is noted that plywood, block boards, flush doors, decorative laminates, decorative Veneers and other products are listed as pollution causing manufacturing units would shut down once the pollution level would increase in DelhiNCR region.

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