A 2015 study by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) surveyed 60 cities of India and estimated that in 2011-12 India generated approx. 26.000 tons of plastic waste daily. This is why India, the second most populous country in the world, will ban single-use plastic from 2 October, 2019. Single-use plastics (SUPs) are those that are discarded after one-time use.
According to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s directions on Independence Day, the central government is all set to launch the campaign with a ban on a number of Single-Use Plastic items on October 2, the birth anniversary of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, Liberator of India.
The ban will include manufacturing, import and use of plastic bags, plates, cups, bottles, straws and a few sachets. An official who asked not to be identified said: “The ban will be comprehensive and will cover manufacturing, usage and import of such items,”
Other countries have also taken measures to eliminate the use of plastic. The European Union will ban single-use plastic items such as straws, forks, knives and cotton buds by 2021. Shanghai, China, is gradually reducing the use of single-use plastics in foods, and the province of Hainan will eliminate completely single-use plastic by 2025.
Some airlines in the world also decided to stop using plastics. Air India will ban the usage of single-use plastic on flights from October 2. Air India stated, “Plastic teacups and tumblers will be replaced with sturdy paper cups and tumblers. Crew meal cutlery will be replaced with lightweight steel cutlery. Cake slices uplifted in the snack boxes will be replaced with muffins to avoid the present plastic wrapping. Banana chips and sandwiches that are presently packed in a plastic pouch will be now served in a butter paper pouch.” Etihad Airways recently revealed that it uses some 27 million single-use plastic coffee cup lids every year. That number encouraged Etihad Airways to take action and, on 22 April, 2019, it became the first major airline to make a long haul flight with no single-use plastics on board.
We must also reduce the use of plastics at home by using reusable and less polluting products for the environment. In nature, we can find products that can easily replace plastics such as cotton, linen, wood, metals, fique, manila hemp, bijao and some kind of lianas.