Air Legislation



CLEAN AIR RULES


OVERVIEW OF THE LAW


The emission of dark smoke from a chimney of any building, fixed boiler or industrial plant or industrial and trade premises is prohibited. The courts take a very strict view in regard to these emissions. Thus the emission of dark smoke in itself is regarded an offence and the entry of smoke onto neighbouring land is not necessary to constitute an offence. However, the law permits certain exemptions provided the emission of smoke from any such chimney does not exceed the prescribed time limits.


Likewise, the emission of grit and dust in excess of a prescribed limit is prohibited. A notice of installation of new furnaces must be given to the local authority. The local authority should also be assured that the furnace is capable of working continuously without emitting smoke. Certain non-domestic furnaces are to be provided with a plant for arresting grit and dust if they are to be used in a building to burn pulverised fuel and huge quantities of other solid or liquid or gaseous matters.


The law provides a defence against this offence where the emission of dark smoke is caused by the lighting up of a cold furnace, some defect in it, or the use of unsuitable oil when suitable oil is not available. With respect to the emission of smoke from any industrial or trade premises, it is a defence to prove that the alleged emission was inadvertent and all practicable steps had been taken to prevent the emission of dark smoke. ref. However, failure to comply with the various requirements of law constitutes an offence, punishable with a fine.


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STATUTORY NUISANCES AND CLEAN AIR


STATEMENT OF LAW


Any emission that is injurious to human health or is simply a nuisance is prohibited. Such emissions are mostly industial and include smoke, fumes, gases, steam, dust, bad smell, noise or vibration or artificial light. However, the location of the industry in an industrial zone and the employment of best practicable means, by taking into account the local conditions, modern technology and financial implications, may mitigate the harshness of law. The local authority is under a duty to issue an abatement notice where it is satisfied that a statutory nuisance exists. Failure to comply with the requirements of the notice within the prescribed period is an offence punishable with a fine.


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COMMON LAW NUISANCE


STATEMENT OF LAW
Common law nuisance can either be private or public. In private nuisance, an individual’s right to use or enjoy land is interfered with and such person is entitled to recourse to a court for an appropriate remedy. While in the case of a public nuisance, only the public authority has the right to bring a legal action for causing a nuisance which materially affects the comfort and convenience of public at large.


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