State Pollution Control Board (SPCB)

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Overview of State Pollution Control Board

State Pollution Control Board is a statutory organisation established under the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act 1974, which works under the supervision of the Central Pollution Control Board to implement the environmental laws and rules within the respective state for the protection of the environment.

It is mandatory for every business, either new or existing, to obtain authorization from the respective State Pollution Control Board in order to carry out the activities of the business. 

Legislative Framework

There are several laws that govern the matters of the State Pollution Control Board, which are given below. 

  • Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981
  • Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977
  • Environmental Protection Act, 1986
  • Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974

Objectives of State Pollution Control Board

The objectives of the State Pollution Control Board are enlisted below.

  • Preservation of natural resources
  • Promotion of sustainable development for economic growth of the nation along with environmental protection and social equity.
  • Effective waste management for the protection of the environment.
  • Spreading Awareness about the protection of the environment among the consumers 
  • Encouraging the general public for the use of environment-friendly products like paper bags, public transport, CFL, etc. to help reduce the environmental pollution.

 Functions of the Board

The functions of the board are given below

  • According to the Air Act 1981 and Water Act 1974, the principal function of the board includes the prevention, abatement, and control of air and water pollution.
  • Moreover, the primary motive is to assist the entrepreneurs and industries in the fulfilment of Corporate Environmental Responsibility (CER)

Apart from this, the major functions of the State Pollution Control Board are given below. 

  • Issue NOC (No-Objection Certificates) from the perspective of the environmental pollution, including the adequacy of the site from the environmental angle.
  • Assessment of quality ambient air.
  • Assessment of inland surface waters’ quality
  • Issuance of the Consent under provisions of Section 21 of the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981.
  • Issue of Consent under provisions of section 25/26 of the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974.
  • Collection and assessment of Water Cess, under the provision of Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977.
  • Assessment and Identification of municipal and industrial pollution sources and control.
  • Conducting Mass awareness programmes.
  • Development of Pollution Control technologies.
  • Notification of emission and effluent standards.
  • Instituting legal action against defaulters.
  • Implementing Biomedical Waste Rules, 1998.
  • Issuance of Authorization under the Hazardous Waste Management Rule, 1989.
  • Identifying the onsite crisis management plans, isolated storage, etc., under the Manufacture, Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemicals Rules, 1989.

Classification of State Pollution Control Board and Business Activities

The industries under SPCB are classified into four categories, namely: Red, Orange, Green and White, 

based on the pollution index score in the decreasing order, i.e. red have the highest pollution index and white has the lowest. Pollution index score refers to the amount of pollution generated by the industry. The industries are so categorised to bring uniformity in categorising the industrial sectors across the country.

Therefore, businesses falling under the Red, Orange, and Green categories have to apply for Consent to Operate (CTO) and Consent to Establish (CTE) under the Air and Water Act. As per the new finalized list of CPCB (Central Pollution Control Board), the categorization is given below.

  • Red Category- 85 Industries
  • Orange Category- 73 Industries
  • Green category- 86 Industries
  • The newly introduced White Category- more than 100.

Entities required to take the SPCB CTE/CTO/Authorisation

The following entities are entitled to obtain Consent from the State Pollution Control Board:

  • Traders
  • Health care Establishments
  • Manufacturing Entities
  • Solid Waste Management entities
  • E-waste Management entities
  • Plastic Waste Management entities
  • Battery Waste Management entities
  • Hazardous Waste Management entities
  • Bio-Medical Waste Management entities

Eligibility Criteria for the issuance of State Pollution Control Board Consent

The eligibility criteria for the issue of State Board Consent are:

  • Place of the unit
  • Permissibility of the activity as per MPD-2001
  • Installation of Emission Control System (ECS)/Effluent Treatment Plants (ETPs), if required
  • Status of D.G. Sets and enclosures over them
  • Findings at the time of inspections (in case of the orange category)

 Importance of State Pollution Control Board CTE/CTO/Authorization

Obtaining the consent of the State Pollution Control Board is essential because of the following reasons-

  • To establish a new industry or continue the existing one
  • For getting a new Electricity connection or continuing the same
  • For getting a new Water connection or continuing the same
  • To obtain a license from Municipal Authority
  • Renewal of Municipal License
  • Renewal of or obtaining eating house license
  • To get No-Objection Certificate from the Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA)

For obtaining Fire NOC and International Trade License

Document required for the Authorization 

Documents to obtain CTE/ CTO

  • Photo of the Location of the project
  • The layout of the location of the project 
  • Project report with details of manufacturing methods and raw materials
  • Proof of Investment
  • Environmental statement
  • NOC Compliance report/Consent conditions in the form
  • Certificate of completion of the effluent treatment plant or add-on pollution control
  • Compliance with Environment clearance criteria 
  • GST certificate
  • Authorized Pan card of the entity
  • Ownership proof of the site
  • Electricity Bill/Water Bill
  • Copy of Aadhaar card which should be linked with the updated Mobile number
  • Pan card of the Company or Partnership Firm
  • Authorization letter (applicable for companies)
  • Municipal/Industry license
  • Factory/Trade/health Trade License
  • Registration proof of the Unit
  • CA letter for total project cost
  • Site Plan of the project
  • FSSAI License for food businesses

Procedure to Obtain SPBC Licence 

  • The applicant needs to submit the application with the required Documents and prescribed fees to the respective State Pollution Control Board. 
  • The Documents would be verified by the officials of the State Pollution Control Board. 
  • The Board shall grant the license after successful verification of the application and Documents. 

Validity of State Pollution Control Board CTE/CTO/Authorization

The State Pollution Control Board CTE/CTO/Authorisation under the Orange Category is granted for a maximum of five years. However, the same is issued under the Green Category for of ten years and fifteen years for the green category

The applicant needs to renew the authorization if there is any change in business activities by filing a fresh CTE/CTO with the SPCB.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • It comprises of a Chairman, and 5 members appointed by the state to represent the government. 
  • A member secretary with experience in dealing with the matters of environment laws. 
  • 2 members appointed by the government who function as local authorities within the state 
  • 3 persons nominated by the state government to represent the interest of fisheries, agriculture, trade and any other interest as the government may seem fit. 
  • 2 person from companies, corporations which are either controlled, owned or managed by the state.

Yes, it is mandatory for the start-ups to obtain authorization from SPBC before commencing their business activities.

The following criteria must be fulfilled

  • The industry should be located in the areas designated for the required purpose
  • The industry shouldn’t cause any noise pollution or emit any form of pollutants in the sewage/stream / well etc 
  • The industry should not invest more than 1 Cr in the industrial plant and machinery 

No, the validity of the authorisation is different for different industries like

  • 5 years for the red category 
  • 10 years for the orange category
  • 15 years for the green category 

Trade effluents include –

  • Medical Waste 
  • Fly ashes
  • Chemical Waste 
  • Detergent washing remnants 
  • Smoke emissions 

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