Ban on single use plastic effective from today

New Delhi,( : Ban on the production, sale and use of single-use plastic items has come into effect from Friday across the country. Under the Plastic Waste Management Rules, this ban is effective on a total of 19 items of single use plastic. These include thermocol, plates, cups, glasses, cutlery such as forks, spoons, knives, straws, trays, wrapping film on sweet boxes, invitation cards, film for cigarette packets, plastic flags, balloon sticks and ice cream sticks, candy sticks and banners less than 100 microns.Minimum thickness of plastic carry bags will be changed from the existing 75 microns to 120 microns by December 31, 2022, as part of the rules notified in August 2021 and efforts to phase out single-use plastics in 2022. Thick carry bags will be introduced with the aim of eliminating use of single use plastics. Control rooms will be set up at the national and state level for effective enforcement of the ban.

First state to ban use of single use plastic in 1998 was Sikkim. Government has set a standard for the thickness of plastic bags and has made it mandatory for the bags to be provided by the retailers. Cleanliness campaigns have been launched in public places, national estates, forests and beaches to prevent plastic pollution. About 100 monuments have been included across the country.

Environment and Ecology Development Society called ‘Beat Plastic Pollution’ works to reduce plastic pollution in Delhi. Central and State Pollution Control Authorities and the union Ministry of Small, Micro and Medium Enterprises will provide technical assistance to small industrial units for production of substitutes for banned single-use plastic items. The Central Pollution Control Board estimated nearly four years ago that India generates about 9,200 metric tons of plastic waste daily, or more than 3.3 million metric tons a year. A section of the industry has claimed that around 70 per cent of the plastic waste in the country is recycled. The country produces 2.4 lakh tonnes of plastic annually, 18 grams per person is generated. This industry is worth 60 thousand crores. 88 thousand units are engaged in its construction. 10 lakh people are associated with this industry. Annual exports are worth Rs 25 thousand crores. The Confederation of All India Traders (CAT) has demanded to postpone the ban on single use plastic by one year. Ministry of Jal Shakti has insisted on the use of kulhad instead of the cup used for tea on the Koo app, country’s first multilingual micro-blogging platform. The ministry has written in the post that kulhads not only enhance the taste of tea, but they are eco-friendly, easily mixed with soil and also save water.(HS)