Indian Desk, Delhi Magazine: From Friday, 19 things made of single-use plastic have been banned across the country including the capital Delhi. This is expected to reduce the plastic waste generated in Delhi by more than half every day. According to an estimate made by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee in May, about 1140 tonnes of plastic waste is generated in the capital every day. Out of this, about 632 tonnes of waste is made of single-use plastic.
Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change shared a press release about it on 28th june.
What is single use plastic?
Single use plastic means such things made of plastic, which we use only once, it is being completely banned. Manufacturing or selling a banned product will attract a jail term of 7 years and a fine of up to Rs 1 lakh under Environment Act Section 15.
Single use plastic is the biggest reason for spreading pollution in the country. According to the central government, more than 30.59 lakh tonnes of single use plastic waste was generated in the country in 2018-19 and 34 lakh tonnes in 2019-20. Items made of single-use plastic are neither decomposable nor can they be burned, as it releases harmful gases from toxic fumes. In such a situation, storage is the only way apart from recycling.
Why is banning single use plastic important?
Plastic waste is the biggest factor in spreading pollution in the country. According to the central government data, 30.59 lakh tonnes of plastic waste was generated in the country in 2018-19 and more than 34 lakh tonnes in 2019-20. Plastics are neither decomposable nor can they be incinerated, as it releases toxic fumes and harmful gases. In such a situation, storage is the only way apart from recycling.
Plastic reaches the river and sea through different routes. Not only this, plastic breaks down into microscopic particles and mixes in water, which we call microplastic. In such a situation, the water of the river and sea also gets polluted. This is the reason that by banning plastic items, India will be able to reduce its plastic waste generation figures.
What is an alternative to single use plastic?
When single use plastic is banned, there can be different options for different things. For example, instead of plastic straws, paper straws. Similarly, ear buds made of bamboo, ice cream sticks made of bamboo, flags made of paper and cloth, traditional earthen utensils etc. can be used instead of single-use plastic.
Beverage companies are in trouble
Beverage companies are facing a crisis due to this ban. This is the reason why beverage companies like Coca Cola, PepsiCo, Parle, Amul and Dabur in India are pressurizing the government to change their decision.
Big companies like Amul and Parle are opposing the ban on single use plastic from July 1. The biggest reason behind this is that every day 15 to 20 lakh plastic straws are required for 10 products including Frooti and Appy Fizz of Parle Company. Similarly, companies like Parle Agro and Dabur also require lakhs of straws every day. In such a situation, these companies are opposing the ban on single use plastic due to these 3 reasons.
1. Non-availability of paper straws easily.
2. The cost of paper straw is 5 to 7 times more than that of plastic straw.
3. To demand some time to develop the infrastructure for making paper straws.
Banning single-use plastic will reduce the amount of this waste. To implement this ban in Delhi, a special campaign will be conducted in the markets and industrial areas. Whereas, a three-day Vikalp Mela is also going to be organized by the Delhi government from Friday to make people aware of its options.
Close monitoring of production
The production, distribution and storage of single use plastic items are being closely monitored by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee. For this, survey of registered units is being done. Whereas, the unregistered units have already been said to be closed.
Read About best places for couples in Delhi.
A three-day fair will be held on options
The Delhi government is also showing proactiveness regarding alternatives to single-use plastics. In this sequence, a three-day fair will be organized at Thyagaraj Stadium from Friday. In this, several companies will showcase alternatives that can be used in place of single-use plastic items.
What plastic products are banned?
Prohibition on manufacturing, stocking, distribution, sale and use of single-use plastic items
- Plastic stick earbuds
- plastic stick balloons
- plastic flags
- plastic ice cream sticks
- thermocol used decorations
- candy sticks
- plastic plates
- plastic cutlery (forks, spoons and knives)
- plastic straws and stirrers
- Sweets packaging
- invitation cards and cigarette packets
- Plastic or PVC banners of less than 100 microns size
According to the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), more than half of the plastics in the world are designed to be used only once. This is the reason that about 300 million tonnes of plastic waste is generated in the world every year. Since the introduction of plastics in the 1950s, 8.3 billion metric tons of plastics have been produced.
You would also like to read about top jewellery brands in India.