Mumbai plastic ban: Here’s what Maharashtra government can do with the banned plastic

Maharashtra government’s Environment Minister Ramdas Kadam’s pet project, the infamous plastic ban has been a nightmare for the civic bodies and government authorities. State government has got criticism from many corners of the state alleging it hasn’t been able to implement it well.

Managing plastic waste has for long been one of the biggest challenges of the state’s waste management programme. Well, the plastic ban will help the government collect tons of plastic, now banned, but what can be done with that plastic. Well, surely it can’t be burnt for environmental reasons, nor it can be thrown away. The question thus arises, what to do with the banned plastic?

Here are some list of products which can be made with banned plastic:

Plastic Roads

Mumbai plastic ban: Here’s what Maharashtra government can do with the banned plastic

The tons of plastic that will be collected can be used for making roads which have more durability and sustainability. The Maharashtra government has, after the ban, made it compulsory to use plastic waste for the construction of bituminous or asphalt roads, this could have been done earlier which could have avoided the ban. Plastic roads have better longevity, require less maintenance and have better water resistance as compared to roads built with conventional material.

How are plastic roads made?

For every 100 kg of tar used to build asphalt roads, 3 to 6 kg of plastic is mixed in it, adding materials like plastic carry bags, sacks, milk pouches, bin linings, cosmetic and detergent bottles, drinking water bottles, bottle caps and household articles.

Plastic public benches

Mumbai plastic ban: Here’s what Maharashtra government can do with the banned plastic

Bottles and containers used for milk, shampoo, laundry detergent and household cleaners are lightweight and tough – but they usually are made from a different type of plastic than beverage bottles.

What can they become? When they are recycled they can make new bottles and containers, plastic lumber, picnic tables, lawn furniture, playground equipment, recycling bins and more.

Even now Tetra Packs will be banned soon, which can be also used for making public benches. For a lot of us, Tetra Packs are seen as an incredible innovation, given its ability to store food for months together. But when it comes to sustainability, this product has a huge potential. Instead of throwing it in the trash, a Mumbai-based NGO, RUR Greenlife, with the help of local citizens decided to collect Tetra packs over three years and use it to build park benches. These benches are now being installed in MbPT garden in Colaba.

Cables and pipes

Mumbai plastic ban: Here’s what Maharashtra government can do with the banned plastic

Even cables and pipes can be made out of banned plastic.  Plastics draw a paramount amount of fossil fuel and continue to enter every production sector of our lives (automotive, aerospace, packaging, building, toys, furniture, clothing, medical etc.). While different from polyolefin, Poly Vinyl Chloride (PVC), along with many halogenated polymers, all belong to the same thermo-plastic group. Rigid plasticised PVC is commonly used in pipes, window framing, floor coverings, roofing sheets, and cables; thereby it is discarded at a high rate.

Kitchenware

Mumbai plastic ban: Here’s what Maharashtra government can do with the banned plastic

Affordable kitchenware in a variety of fun colors can be made with recycled plastics. Plastic cutting boards, mixing bowls, colanders, and tableware are durable enough to stand up to daily use, and plastic food storage containers can be reused again and again.

Plastic T-Shirts, really?

Mumbai plastic ban: Here’s what Maharashtra government can do with the banned plastic

When plastic bottles are recycled they can be made into lots of stuff: t-shirts, sweaters, fleece jackets, insulation for jackets and sleeping bags, carpeting and more bottles. It takes about 10 bottles to make enough plastic fibre to make a cool new t-shirt. It takes 63 bottles to make a sweater. It takes only 14 bottles to create enough insulation (fibrefill) for a ski-jacket.  And 114 bottles are enough insulation (fibrefill) for a sleeping bag.

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