Know The Law

Environmental laws in India

Environmental law refers to a cluster of laws, regulations, agreements, and common law that controls how humans interact with their environment. The law aims to safeguard the environment and make rules for how people can use natural resources. Environmental laws seek to save the environment from harm and decide who can use natural resources and on what terms. Laws may regulate

  • Pollution, 
  • Using natural resources, 
  • Forest protection, 
  • Mineral harvesting, 
  • Animal and fish populations.

Important environmental laws in India.

These are some Indian laws concerning environmental welfare and protection:

The National Green Tribunal Act, 2010

NGT is a body set up beneath the National Green Tribunal Act (2010) for the effective and expeditious removal of cases relating to environmental protection and the preservation of forests and other natural resources.

After Australia and New Zealand, India became the third country to set up a specialized environmental court. NGT runs to abandon pleas within six months of filing the same. The NGT has five sittings. New Delhi is the main sitting place; the four others include Bhopal, Pune, Kolkata, and Chennai.

The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981

WHO states the capital city New Delhi is one of the top most polluted cities in the world. It is indicated in a survey that the case of respiratory disease in New Delhi due is about 12 times the national average. The Act Equips for preventing, controlling, and reducing air pollution. 

The act enables Central and State Boards to declare pollution control areas, rules on precise industrial units, the power of the Boards to limit the discharge of air impurities, control entry, check, taking models and study, fines, crimes by firms and State and notice of crimes, etc.

The act explicitly permits State Governments to put air pollution sites and name the type of fuel used in these assigned areas. As per this Act, no one can use certain types of industries without the approval of the State Board. This act also ensures maintaining the level of air pollution. 

The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974

The Prevention and Control of Water Pollution Act was passed in 1974 to stop and control water pollution and preserve or fix the wholesomeness of water in the country. The Act was amended in 1988. The Prevention and Control of Water Pollution Act was passed in 1977 to supply for the levy and pool of a cess on water ruined by persons using and taking on specific industrial activities. 

It is ordered to raise the help of the state and central board for the deterrence and rule of water pollution formed under the Prevention and Control of the act 1974. The Act was last amended in 2003. The Act was amended in 1978 and once again in 1988. The 1988 Revision made it work closely with the Environment Protection Act 1986.

The Environment Protection Act, 1986

The Environment Protection Act was presented in India in 1986 to handle the impact of pollution on the environment. This Act aimed to form legal protection to hold the tier of pollution, which also delays financial progress by harming crops. Implement action plans must take place to lessen the effect of pollution on the environment. 

The government is also responsible for taking care of region-specific environmental issues that generate frequent health problems. The Act defines other criteria and policies to prevent the negative effect of pollution on the environment.


The concern for environmental protection in India has grown to become the country’s basic law. Still, it is coupled with the human rights policy, and it is now widely believed that the basic human right of everyone is to live in a pollution-free environment. 

An ideal environment is said to be full of human dignity. It is time for the public, public institutions, states, and Central Government to identify the harm our development process is doing to the environment. Strict acts are also needed. 

Laws are a vital medium for executing citizens to keep cleanliness and thus fight pollution. However, environmental protection laws need to be repositioned in a modern context. However, it is necessary to comprehend that such laws are insufficient until we all show a positive attitude toward them.


Q. Who can bring an environmental law case to court?

Anyone can bring a case to court about environmental law:

  • If their property was harmed or if they have acquired bodily injury.
  • Harms from somebody who is breaking the law.

Nationals can also bring a suit against firms or organizations breaking the law.

Q. Can someone file a case against a company if the state is actively seeking the person or has to take action against them in the past?

A. Typically, no. If the government or another has already begun to stop the company from breaking the law, an individual will often not be permitted to file a suit.