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The environment is very crucial for us to understand as it defines our surroundings and impacts the way we live. It consists of the air we breathe, water covering Earth’s major surface, and plants and animals that live on this planet. It is important to understand the word “environment” and realize how important it is in our daily life. Studies have shown how scientists study the way people influence each other. They have found out that the majority of us are responsible for deforestation, air pollution and climate changes, Acid rain which is dangerous to the animals as well as our health.
The government from the last few decades has been initiating and shown interest in protecting and promoting the environment by enacting Environmental laws.

Meaning of Environment

It encompasses everything of water, air, and land, as well as their interactions with humans, other living things, and objects. The environment is a multidimensional and polycentric problem that affects human existence.

  • Environmental Pollution

Pollution is a phrase that describes unfavorable changes in our environment as a result of human activity., either directly or indirectly, through changes in energy systems causing physical destruction and affecting a large number of species. As a result of the amount of any foreign material to water, air, or soil, the natural properties of these basic constituents may change immediately or over time, causing some adverse changes by rendering them unfit and harmful.

  • Water Pollution

Water pollution is the pollution of water bodies. Water pollution is caused when pollutants are discharged into the water bodies.

  • Air pollution

The gases oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, argon, and others make up air. When chemicals, particles, or biological materials are released into the atmosphere, they cause discomfort, sickness, or death in humans., along with damage to other living things such as food crops, the natural environment, or the built environment.

  • Noise Pollution

Any undesired sound that disturbs environmental balance is said to as ‘noise.’ Decibels are being used to measure noise. Motor vehicles, aircraft, firecrackers, sirens, loudspeakers, and machinery are all major sources of ‘noise’.

  • Land Pollution

Deforestation, the discharge of toxic compounds onto the land, the placement of filthy waste on the land, the dumping of rubbish, medical wastes, and other factors all contribute to soil pollution. Pesticide misuse is also a source of land contamination since it contaminates water.

  • Solid Waste Pollution

Wastes are materials that are no longer required and, if not treated further, will become economically useless. Organic wastes, ashes, biomedical wastes, body parts of slain animals, dry or wet rubbish from domestic activities, such as plastics, metals, woods, glass, paper, detergents, industrial wastes, industrial discharges, and so on are all termed “solid wastes.”

  • Food Pollution

All living things need food to get the energy they need to go about their everyday lives. The health of the customer will be harmed if the food ingested is contaminated or adulterated. The use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides at various phases of plant growth is the beginning of food pollution.

Legal Mechanism in relation to environment Protection

Environmental law is a mechanism for environmental preservation, as well as for controlling or preventing any act or omission that pollutes or threatens to damage it. An environmental legal system is a set of laws and administrative norms that govern and define people’s interactions with the environment, as well as people’s interactions with the environment itself. The Honourable Supreme Court described “Environmental Law” as a tool to protect and develop the environment, as well as to governor prevent any action that contaminates or is likely to harm the environment, in K. M. Chinnappa v. Union of India.

  • The Environment Protection Act, 1986

The Bhopal Gas Disaster compelled India’s government to implement extensive environmental rules, including regulations surrounding the storage, management, and disposal of hazardous materials. The Indian Parliament passed the Environment Protection Act, 1986, based on these rules. The government established Pollution Control Boards
(PCBs) within the framework of these laws in order to prevent, control, and abate environmental pollution.

  • The Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules, 2000

The Environment Protection Act of 1986, or any other regulation, made no clear provision for ‘noise pollution.’ Ambient noise levels in public locations are rising as a result of different sources such as industrial activities, generator sets, loudspeakers, and vehicle horns, among others. It was imperative that a law be enacted that would regulate and control noise-producing sounds with the goal of preserving ambient air quality requirements in terms of noise.

  • The Public Liability Insurance Act, 1981

This Act intends to give quick relief to those who have been injured as a result of an accident involving a hazardous material. It states that before handling any hazardous substance, every owner must obtain one or more insurance policies that provide for insurance contracts. The goal of purchasing insurance is to ensure that compensation is provided in the event of a future accident.

What does Environmental law cover?

Pollution is the first and most apparent method that the public is aware of and engaged with environmental law. Some of the world’s first environmental laws address the preservation of our environment from toxic elements, with the goal of improving public health as a result.

  • Air Pollution and Quality: This is the process of enforcing air quality regulations by monitoring what constitutes safe levels of specific pollutants produced by industrial operations, motor vehicles, and other aspects of our daily life. There are laws in place to guarantee that working conditions are safe both outside and inside. They are intended to safeguard human and environmental health.
  • Even with the greatest of intentions, toxic spills and leaks can occur. Some are the product of carelessness, while others are unavoidable. Irrespective of whether a chemical leak is avoidable or unavoidable, there are laws that must be obeyed to decide what the responsible party and the cleanup team must undertake to ensure that contamination is minimized and controlled.
  • Chemical safety rules strive to regulate how we utilize chemicals in any job where they are employed, from industrial manufacturing to agriculture, testing laboratories, professional cleaners, and repair garages. This includes proper chemical storage, use, safety equipment in the application, storage container types, and how (and to whom) they are purchased and sold, such as licenses, to registered firms, and so on.
  • There are regulations that restrict what humans may and cannot do to and with water supplies at the local, national, and international levels. Pollutants can affect drinking water and local places, and they can also find its directly into the water system and into the oceans, potentially inflicting widespread damage.

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This article is written by Vidushi Joshi student at UPES, Dehradun

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