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India bans some disposable plastics as part of a broader plan

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The Associated Press

Associated Press

Aniruddha Ghosal

New Delhi (AP) — India's Some Disposable or Disposable Plastics on Friday as part of a federal program to phase out ubiquitous materials The product has been banned. A country of almost 1.4 billion people.

In the first place, we identified 19 plastic products that are not very useful but are likely to be garbage and make manufacturing, importing, inventory, distribution and sales illegal. These items range from plastic cups and straws to ice cream sticks. Some disposable plastic bags will also be phased out and replaced with thicker ones.

Thousands of other plastic products, such as bottles of water and soda, bags of chips, are not subject to the ban. However, the federal government has set the goal that manufacturers are responsible for recycling or disposing of them after use.

Plastic manufacturers have appealed to the government to postpone the ban because of inflation and potential unemployment. However, India's Federal Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav said at a press conference in New Delhi that the ban had been in the pipeline for a year.

"It's time," he said.

This is not the first time India has considered a plastic ban. However, previous iterations focused on specific areas, so the degree of success varied. A national ban, not only on the use of plastic, but also its production or import, was a "certain boost", said Satyarupa Shekhar, Asia-Pacific coordinator of advocacy group BreakFreefromPlastic.

Most plastics are not recycled globally, and millions of tons of people pollute the world's oceans, affect wildlife and are contained in drinking water. It has been. Scientists are trying to assess the risks posed by a small portion of broken plastic, known as microplastics. In 2020, India generated over 4.1 million metric tons (4.5 million US tons) of plastic waste, according to the Federal Pollution Monitoring Agency.

The eerie waste management system of cities and villages in fast-growing countries means that much of this waste is not recycled and pollutes the environment. According to Our World in Data, in 2019, approximately 13 million metric tons (14 million US tons) of plastic waste was either discarded or not recycled by South Asian countries.

"This is too small given the magnitude of the plastic crisis, and too little in both its scope and scope," Shekhar said.

Ravi Agarwal, director of Toxics Link, a New Delhi-based advocacy group focused on waste management, said the ban was a "good start", but how well it succeeded. He added that it depends on what is being done. .. The actual enforcement of the law is in the hands of individual state and city municipalities.

India said banned items have been identified with the availability of alternatives such as bamboo spoons, plantain trays and wooden ice cream sticks in mind. But in the days leading up to the ban, many vendors said they were confused.

Moti Rahman, 40, is a vegetable seller in New Delhi. Customers in his cart carefully selected fresh summer ingredients on Tuesday and put them in plastic bags. Mr Rahman said he agreed to the ban, but he added that his business would be affected if he stopped the plastic bags without a readily available and cost-effective replacement.

"After all, plastic is used for everything," he said.


The Associated Press's Department of Health Sciences is supported by the Science Education Department of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. AP is solely responsible for all content. Follow AP's scientific coverage at