A total of 2,591 out of 4,704 ULBs have already reported notification of SUP ban as per the directions of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change (MoEF&CC), therefore, the states / UTs will need to ensure that the remaining 2,100-plus ULBs notify the same by June 30, the Ministry said on Saturday on the eve of World Environment Day.
plastic waste management, including elimination of SUP, is a crucial area of focus under the Swachh Bharat Mission – Urban 2.0.
As per the Plastic Waste Management (Amended) Rules, 2021, the manufacture, import, stocking, distribution, sale and use of carry bags made of virgin or recycled plastic less than 75 microns (i.e. 0.075 mm in thickness) has been banned with effect from September 30, 2021 as opposed 50 microns recommended earlier under PWM Rules, 2016.
In accordance with the PWM (Amended) Rules, 2021, a range of complementary initiatives will also be taken up to strengthen enforcement. ULBs will need to identify SUP-alternatives (such as cloth/jute/plastic bags, degradable cutleries, etc.) readily available in the market and create awareness about such alternatives among citizens.
Corporate entities, dealing with bottled drinks may be requested to set up Bottle Banks (where users can get paid for dropping off PET bottles), and also set up subsidized reusable plastic bottle booths at different locations, as part of their Extended Producers’ Responsibility (EPR) mandates.
Alongside, ULBs may establish Thaila (bag) / Bartan (Utensils) kiosks or bhandars to provide citizens with alternatives to SUP, especially for use in public meetings and festivals, thereby helping to reduce SUP consumption. These initiatives may be strengthened through ‘Swachhata Raths’ to be deployed in all public places, markets, and other high footfall areas to spread awareness against use of SUP and for availing SUP-alternatives.