Pollution License: Process and Manner to Acquire

What is pollution?


Pollution simply means to include every activity that forms the basis for causing degradation or depreciation in the quality of the environment. Environmental pollution happens when the water, air or land get contaminated in a way that can cause potential harm to human health or non-human nature without any possible justification. Pollution is not a new phenomenon and has caused serious health impediments in modern times.


Rapid industrialization and urbanization remain the very causes behind environmental pollution. Further Environmental contamination is associated with the release of hazardous materials into the atmosphere, such as gaseous contaminants, radioactive metals, and particulate matter (PM) into water bodies and soil. The causes can be listed as follows:

  1. Urbanization and industrialization
  2. Mining and exploration
  3. Agricultural activities
  4. Burning of fossil fuels
  5. Particulate matter
  6. Plastics


Pollution can be categorized into the following:

  1. Air
  2. Water
  3. Soil

Effect of pollution

Environmental pollution’s effects have been underreported in most developing countries, which are the most affected. This is partly due to unreliable information management systems and partly due to a lack of understanding of the detrimental impact emissions can have on the atmosphere and human health. People in low-income countries are more focused over food and shelter than health and environmental protection, resulting in increased emissions and its implications.

  1. Effects on environment: The word “environmental pollution” was coined because the environment is almost always the first victim of an upswing in pollution. Pollution affects all land, water and air. Pollution affects chemical properties of soil which are distorted, and essential cationic nutrients such as magnesium, potassium, and calcium are lost, resulting in a decrease in soil ph. Furthermore, pollution typically induces changes in chemical, microbiological, and physical properties in water bodies.
  2. Effects on human health: Human health is jeopardized by pollution especially through air pollution wherein the pollutants cause cardiopulmonary diseases, respiratory diseases, cancer etc.

Pollution License in India

To be able to start a business that carries the potential to generate pollutants in the form of industrial, chemical or medical waste then there is a requirement to send an application to the relevant State Pollution Control Board in order to acquire a pollution license/certificate or permission to launch your business. Pollution license application form can be downloaded from the requisite website.

Prior to beginning construction or other similar activities to start the company, this consent to establish must be obtained.

After the construction/setup process is finished, one must apply for and receive a consent to operate. This CTO is typically valid for 5 years, but this can vary from state to state.

Categories of Industries that require pollution license

The criteria for categorization of the industrial sector has been strengthened by The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC). The categories include as follows:

  1. Red industries: It constitutes the highest pollution index. Examples might include: large hotels and hospitals.
  2. Orange category: It constitutes medium sized enterprises which generates comparatively less pollutants.
  3. Green category: It constitutes low pollution index
  4. White category: It constitute being non polluting

Industries exempted from obtaining pollution license

White category industries are exempted from acquiring pollution license or CTO. The intent to set up an industry would suffice after intimating it to the concerned pollution control board. On the other hand the white category industries need to fulfil certain conditions in order to be eligible for exemption which are as follows:

  1. Firstly the industry is required to be set up in the defined industrial zone as per the need by state authorities.
  2. The investment must not be more than 1 crore in fetching the plant and machinery
  3. The industry must swear by the fact that it should not indulge in discharging any effluents into water streams or cause air or noise pollution. Further must not deal in handling toxic or hazardous waste.

Requirement of documents for acquiring consent to establish

Certain documents are required to be furnished some of which are as follows:

  1. Attested sale deed copy to ensuring proof as to possession of site
  2. In the case of public/private sectors, an attestation of the Memorandum of Articles copy or a registered partnership deed in the case of a partnership corporation.
  3. Chalking the layout plan with respect to depicting the location of numerous process equipment.
  4. Inclusion of topo sketch
  5. Manufacturing process of every product in detail
  6. Water balance details
  7. Classification certificate pertaining to land use
  8. Consent fee payable to board pertaining to water and air act
  9. Grant of groundwater clearance by the competent authority
  10. Proposal pertaining to Sewage Treatment Plant
  11. Proposal pertaining to Effluent Treatment Plant
  12. Proposal pertaining to Air pollution control
  13. Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) should be included with each and every item containing hazardous chemicals used as raw materials.
  14. CRZ clearance granted by the respective authority, etc.


Pollution in middle- and low-income countries overwhelmingly impacts vulnerable groups. The risks of pollution should be made more commonly recognized, and all hands must be on deck to discourage behaviors that result in pollution, allowing for the remediation of a somewhat contaminated environment. Biological approaches involving the use of microorganisms have been adjudged eco-friendly, cost-effective, and sustainable practices for environmental and human protection, among other remediation methods.

Author Bio:

Corpseed ITES Pvt. Ltd. is a technology platform, make things easier for Entrepreneurs and businesses. Our goal is to help entrepreneurs in finalizing the legal structure of the business, Licenses/Permits for State Pollution Control Board, Legal compliance.

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