Centre issues advisory to states, UTs to phase out single-use plastic

States and UTs have been asked to take up a range of activities to make the country free of single-use plastic

AgenciesUpdated: Saturday, June 04, 2022, 10:03 PM IST
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According to the government, while 2,591 urban local bodies (ULBs) out of 4,704 have already reported notification of single-use plastic ban. /Representative image | Pic for representation

The Centre has issued an advisory to states and Union Territories to phase out single-use plastic and contribute to improve the environment under the overarching mandate of ''Clean and Green'', a statement said on Saturday.

According to the government, while 2,591 urban local bodies (ULBs) out of 4,704 have already reported notification of single-use plastic ban as per the directions of the Central Pollution Control Board and the environment ministry, states and UTs will need to ensure that the remaining 2,100-plus ULBs notify the same by June 30, 2022.

In the statement issued a day before the World Environment Day, the Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry said states and UTs have been asked to take up a range of activities to make the country free of single-use plastic (SUP).

The activities will include large-scale cleaning and 'plogging' drives with special emphasis on plastic waste collection, as well as large-scale tree plantation drives with participation of all citizens – students, voluntary organisations, self-help groups, local NGOs/CSOs, NSS and NCC cadets, RWAs, market associations and corporate entities among others, it said.

Under the Swachh Bharat Mission-Urban 2.0 currently being implemented by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, plastic-waste management, including elimination of SUP, is a crucial area of focus.

Given the dual mandate of the World Environment Day and India's committed ban of SUP by June 30, the ministry has issued a detailed advisory to states and UTs to take up a range of activities to fulfil these mandates, the statement said.

It also states that ULBs will need to identify SUP 'hotspots' and eliminate them, while parallely leveraging the support of the state pollution control boards and forming special enforcement squads, conducting surprise inspections and imposing heavy fines and penalties on defaulters for enforcing SUP bans.

As per the Plastic Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2021, the manufacture, import, stocking, distribution, sale and use of carry bags made of virgin or recycled plastic less than 75 microns (75 µ i.e. 0.075 mm in thickness) has been banned with effect from 30th September, 2021 as opposed to 50 microns recommended earlier under PWM Rules, 2016, the ministry said.

(With PTI inputs)

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