Come 5th June 2022 – World Environment Day – States/ UTs and Urban Local Bodies across the country will swing into campaign mode, in a bid to make the country free of single use plastic (SUP), as well as contribute to improving the environment, under the overarching mandate of “Clean and Green”.
What are Single use Plastics?
India has defined single-use plastic as disposable plastics that are commonly used for packaging and include items intended to be used only once before they are thrown away or recycled.
These include items such as carry bags, food packaging, bottles, straws, containers, cups and cutlery.
According to a fact sheet released by The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and environment ministry in 2018, around 43% of manufactured plastics are used for packaging purposes and most are of single-use.
Single use plastic contaminates soil and water; choke waterways and exacerbate natural disasters. Plastics also block sewage systems and provide breeding grounds for mosquitoes; release toxic chemicals and emissions when burned.
Legal Regulations in India:
In order to address the issue of scientific plastic waste management, the Plastic Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2011 were notified in 2011 by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MOEFCC) which included plastic waste management.
The Government has notified the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016, in suppression of the earlier Plastic Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2011.