Recently, the Secretary General of United Nations, Mr. Guterres, praised India and Prime minister Modi to take initiative for reducing plastic pollution by banning the use of single use plastic in India.
Starting from October 2nd, use of thermocol, polythene bags, plates, bowls, cutlery, straws made of plastic and plastic water bottles less than 200 ml in volume will be considered as an offence. If caught using any of the above for the first time, the fine is Rs.5,000/. The fine increases to Rs.10,000/ for the second offence and for the third time, it can cost you Rs.25,000/ and three months of imprisonment.
This new rule does sound drastic, however, taking such drastic step is more than important in today’s time and place.
"I commend those who have decided to pay tribute to Mahatma Gandhi's legacy by marking his anniversary with a project connected to one of the sustainable development goals. It is a fitting way to honour the most action-oriented leader"
-Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary-General
Single use plastic contaminates our resources, soil, water, food. It’s production process pollutes our air as it is made from fossil fuels. We see videos of how plastic pollution in the oceans is affecting the aquatic life, every day on our social medias. Every time people visit the market, they bring home a bunch of polyethene bags. Every time there is any function or party, plastic and thermocol plates, cups and bowls are used in a large quantity. Every day lots of plastic bottles and plastic cutlery, etc are discarded in large quantities. These don’t get recycled and end up in the landfills, where they will stay for thousands of years. But, it's still need to be seen, whether banning single-use-plastic solves the problem or not.
"Plastic isn’t the problem. It’s what we do with it. And that means the onus is on us to be far smarter in how we use this miracle material."
-Erik Solheim, former executive director, UNEP
This rule will help to discourage people to quit buying and using more single use plastic. It will help reduce the plastic garbage being created every single day. It will make people shift to more eco friendly lifestyle and use products that don’t harm the environment, which is really the need of the hour. Just carrying your own cloth bag while shopping can help make a huge difference.
Prime Minister Modi has also urged the leading companies in the food industry to come up with solutions to replace plastic packaging and other single use plastic products with biodegradable, eco-friendly products. The news of this plastic ban has also put India at the forefront of the global fight against climate change. With such good initiatives and better recycling and waste management, positive changes are inevitable.
"World should say Good-bye to Single Use Plastic"
- PM Narendra Modi, Prime Minister, India
Hello readers, I am Saee Gunjal, author of this Wlog. I am studying Environmental Engineering from 'The University of Toledo' ( Toledo, Ohio) and love to dance. I am passionate about environmental issues and waste management. I plan to work with the same after I graduate. Stay tuned for my next wlog on 'Alternatives available for banned items'