Government planning ways to tackle mounting plastic waste


New Delhi : Concerned over the high amount of plastic being dumped into the environment and the consequent clogging of drains, the government is planning to promote recycling technology for used plastics as a parallel industry.

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The fertilizer and chemicals ministry is said to be keen on generating fuel from recycled plastic.

Plastic is non-biodegradable and toxic and in monsoons it wreaks havoc in urban areas by clogging drains and water bodies as was evident in Mumbai’s unprecedented flooding this year and last year when the storm water drains got clogged due to plastic littering.

Now crucially, urban local bodies are being brought on board. An incentive scheme for urban local bodies which contribute significantly towards plastic waste management recycling is to be formalised, with the ministry of urban development being the nodal agency.

Informed sources say the fertiliser and chemicals ministry is advocating developing awareness of the recyclable properties of plastic and eliminate its littering. While the recently released new petrochemical policy aims to increase per capita consumption of plastics, the ministry is equally keen to stress on plastic waste disposal and its effect on the environment.

With environmental concerns on top of the government’s agenda, the ministry wants a system of checks and balances to be instituted. The ministry is also keen to work towards a mechanism for industry contribution to the recycling of used plastic.

At the same time, a policy on restriction on import of plastic waste is being reviewed in consultation with the ministry of environment and forests and the department of commerce, official sources said.