India is moving towards banning Single Use Plastic


Renthungo Humtsoe 

Asst. Professor, Dept of Pol Sc SJCJ (A) 

As October approaches, many Single Use plastic (SUPs) items are set to disappear from our lives. From the Indian Railways to Governmental departments, Airlines, Courts, Restaurants, Universities and colleges, many institutions have already announced bans on Single use plastic on their premises. Plastic Pollution is the accumulation of plastic objects and particles in the earth surface that adversely affects, Wildlife, wildlife habitation and Human Environment. Plastics are inexpensive and durable and as a result they are levels of plastic production by Humans are very high. Plastic Pollution afflict Land, Waterways and Oceans. It  is estimated that 1.1 to 8.8 Million Metric tons of plastic waste enters the ocean from Coastal Communities each Year. Living organisms Particularly Marine Animals are harmed either by mechanical effects, such as entanglement to plastic objects, problem related to ingestion of plastic waste or through exposure to chemical within plastics that interfere with their Physiology. Not only did it effects Marine lives but it Effects Humans , that includes Disturbances of various Hormonal mechanisms. As of 2018 about 380 Million tons of plastic is produced Worldwide each year. From 1950 upto 2018, an estimated 6.3 billion tons of plastic is produced Worldwide.

But how did this entire ban come about? And what exactly is going to happen after? Although there is no official word from central government yet, many state government made recent announcements and development to Ban Single Use Plastic. India has held imposing a blanket ban on single use plastic to combat Plastic Pollution. The plan was announced by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi during the 150th Anniversary of the Birth of independence leader Mahatma Gandhi as a broader Campaign to bid India of Single Use Plastic by 2022.

Plastic is one of the biggest environmental hazard of our time. Untreated plastic waste effects the Environment in Multiple ways; by entering water bodies of marine mammals, chocking water bodies and by leaching heavy metals and chemicals. The average Indian consumed 11 kilograms of plastic in 2014 to 2015 , and this is expected to rise to 22 kilograms by 2022. As a country we genarate 26000 tonnes of plastic waste daily, of which 40%remains uncollected. Single Use Plastic constitute a huge volume of the overall plastic problems, because much of it are neither biodegradable nor recyclable. According to the Energy and Resources Institute around 43% of plastic produce in India is for Packaging purposes and most of that is Single Use Plastic bags. 

Therfore, on world Environment Day 2018, India had pledged to eliminate Single Use Plastic by 2022. Earlier this month, at a conference in New Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said about his Government intention to put an end to Single Use Plastic in coming years. The central government has not yet released list of items to be banned, but it is expected that plastic bags, straws, cups, small beverage bottles, decoration items and some sachet variants may be banned from October end. States like Maharashtra, Goa has implemented Laws banning Plastics with Penalties violating Single Use Plastic Bans.