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[Ambassador report] [Free Report] Recycling plastic to revive environment

by Ishitwa - | 16-08-2019 22:39 Comments 4 Comments recommendations 0 recommendations



Recycling plastic to revive environment



Plastics pose one of the stiffest environmental challenges today. Elimination of plastics in a country like India holds significance in not only for the betterment of environment but also plastic waste management in India can create jobs in the country. Plastic pollution is almost ubiquitous, with plastic being present in enormous quantities in every water body. An estimated 5-13 tonnes of plastic is disposed of in oceans every year. India itself is a large sufferer of the menace. An incapable solid waste management system of the country makes India only worse off. Two of the major rivers of the world passing through the Indian subcontinent, The Indus and The Ganges, contribute to 90% of the aquatic plastic waste. Talking about the Aquatic ecosystem, 50% of the aquatic biodiversity has been lost since the year 1970, with plastic pollution being the superior driving force.

 

India, despite facing the dire consequences of plastic pollution doesn’t really have a concrete plan of action to tackle the accumulated waste. While various schemes to ban plastic use have been introduced since tie immemorial, these measures have had meagre contribution in controlling plastic pollution. As a country which produces 15k tonnes of plastic waste, of which only 60% is recycled, research shows that recycling plastic waste can create 6 times more jobs than simply dumping plastics. The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and Accenture estimate that proper management of plastics that are currently not recycled in India could create around 1.4 million jobs and ~US$2 billion in income. [1]Delving into correct paths to explore potential of recycling shall benefit India on a large scale.


Despite the gloomy status of plastic pollution in India, all is not lost.India happens to be the highest recycler PET or polyethylene terephthalate, a form of polyester that is very commonly moulded into plastic bottles and packaged food containers and beverages, personal care products, etc. is recycled in India till up to 90% of the waste, outperforming Japan, Europe and the US in doing so. With new and emerging start-ups realising the need for plastics pollution prevention along with the consumer choice also having a paradigm shift, start-ups are taking the initiative to create environmentally friendly products and services, help with recycling, sustainable options, creating awareness with consumers selecting these services alongside. From collecting clothes, books, plastic, e-waste to helping make cities, religious places, beaches, historical monuments plastic-free - they are doing it all. [2]

 

But a lot is to be done. The matter is so large scale in India, that the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi took it up while addressing the nation on 15thof August 2019, on the occasion of India’s Independence Day celebrations. He said “Can we free India from single-use plastic? The time for implementing such an idea has come. May teams be mobilised to work in this direction.” He expressed his aspiration for a significant step to be taken by 2ndof October, that embarks the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. Last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced plans to eliminate single-use plastics by 2022 on the occasion of World Environment day on 5th June 2018. Single-use plastic that can be defined as any plastic item that can’t be utilised or recycled any further than one time, adds significantly to India’s piling up waste. However, achievement of this ambitious target for a country as vast as India will require extreme and exhaustive efforts from the ends of leaders and stakeholders, that is the Indian population.

 

Consorted efforts are to be taken to slowly phase out single-use plastic products. A small recent initiative taken up by McDonalds India was that they have stopped serving beverages in plastic utensils. McDonalds has taken the advantage of its pedestal to spread the message of plastic pollution. How much these little initiatives can impact the lives is beyond definable and only the citizens of the country can make the country a better place to live in!

SOURCES:

[1] https://www.uts.edu.au/sites/default/files/article/downloads/Addressing%20plastic%20pollution%20in%20India%2C%20Background%20paper%20prepared%20for%20Mumbai%20July%202018%20Business%20forum%20-%20UTS%20Institute%20for%20Sustainable%20Futures%20July%202018.pdf

[2] https://yourstory.com/2019/08/independence-day-plastic-pollution-eco-friendly-products

Below is the image of iced tea being served without plastic products at McDonalds India.
Iced tea being served without plastic products at Mcdonalds India

4 Comments

Kushal Naharki

  • Kushal Naharki says :
    Hello Ishwita

    I do hope that you are fine and doing great with your works.
    Thank you for your report about Recycling plastic to revive environment

    Green Cheers from Nepal :)
    Keep writing great reports.
    We are eager to read more reports from you.

    Regards,
    Kushal Naharki

    Posted 20-08-2019 23:44

Wonhee Mentor

  • Wonhee Mentor says :
    Hello Ishitwa

    Thank you for your report on plastic issue in India. I can't agree with you more on that plastic pollution is ubiquitous and that's why cooperation among countries must be strengthened to mitigate the pollution. Despite enormous amount of plastic waste in India, there's still hope as politicians in India have recognized the severity of this problem and are willing to solve it. I hope the authority set more stringent regulations and bans on single-use plastic products.

    Wonhee Mentor
    Posted 20-08-2019 20:22

Louis Mentor

  • Louis Mentor says :
    Hi Ishitwa,

    As it takes a very long time to process the plastic wastes, the best way for us is to recycle them as much as we can. Due to your report, it was interesting to read plastic pollution problem in India. I hope more and more plastics can be recycled in the future for sake of your beautiful planet.

    Louis Mentor
    Posted 20-08-2019 01:06

Pushpanjali Shrivastava

  • Pushpanjali Shrivastava says :
    Contributions in same direction have to be made. Nice report.
    Posted 16-08-2019 23:13

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