India’s new nationwide ban on single use plastics will begin on October 2nd. The wide-ranging ban names six specific types of single use plastic– plastic bags, small plastic bottles, plastic plates, plastic straws, plastic cups, and some types of satchels (such as condiment packets).
Just those six types of plastics are estimated to make up 5-10% of India’s 14 ton annual consumption of plastic, illustrating the bans intended significance.
An unnamed official speaking on the ban said, “The ban will be comprehensive and will cover manufacturing, usage and import of such items.” The rollout of the plan includes a six month grace period before the government will issue consequences for violators of the ban. This aims to give businesses adequate time to transition to a more environmentally sustainable alternative to the single use plastics they may be currently utilizing.
In a recent speech on the country’s Independence Day India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke of the plans to ban single use plastics and said of the garbage crisis in India, “Single-use plastic is the root cause of many of our problems – but the solution has to come from within, from us.” India is home to the second most polluting river in the world, the Ganges. Besides the Yangtze River in China, the Ganges is most responsible for plastics polluting the ocean. Amazon has also released a plan saying its India unit will make the switch from plastic to paper packaging products by June 2020.
What innovations have you seen replace single use plastics? What country might be next in banning single use plastics?