Written by Nihal Dhingra, a grade 10 student.
A nationwide ban on single-use plastic has come into force from 1 July 2022. As a country, India has been struggling with the piling mountains of non-biodegradable waste. At such a time bans like this are cheerfully welcomed by nature enthusiasts and citizens alike.
Single-use plastics (SUP) are those that have low utility but high littering potential. They can litter the streets and not degrade in short periods. On the contrary, SUP may take hundreds of years to degrade causing major damage to the environment.
Fact: India generates about 3.5 million tonnes of plastic waste every year!
Like all bans, the success only lies in the implementation and execution. Nationwide stores need to be educated and sensitized about the need to make this change to more sustainable methods.
The articles banned are listed below
- Plastic straws
- Balloon sticks
- Lollipop sticks
- Plastic earbuds
- Plastic cutlery including plates, glasses, etc
- Plastic packaging on sweets
- Invitation cards
- Polystyrene for decorations
- PVC banners
- Plastic flags
There are many alternatives available in the market for these. Plastic straws have been replaced with paper straws, and plates, cups, and cutlery has been replaced with biodegradable material which is sturdy enough. Earbuds are easily available with wooden sticks etc
It is imperative to follow the 3 R’s –reuse, reduce and recycle. Plastics choke the drains and cause major environmental issues. Every citizen must pledge to carry a shopping bag and say no to plastic bags if offered.
I sincerely hope that this ban is executed and implemented strictly. This is our only hope to save mother nature and our country from drowning under the immense weight of plastic mountains.
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