Sunday, September 19, 2021
HomeOpinionDiaryRecycle plastic and say No to paper: Part II

Recycle plastic and say No to paper: Part II

Today mobile has made our life easy but at the same time it is taking away our mental peace. It has made a ‘distance in our relationships’. It is also generating e-waste which is not recyclable. So, should we ban use and sale of mobile phones?

Car, bikes, trucks emit lot of CO2 and particulate matter causing breathing problems and cancer. So ban cars and stop manufacturing all vehicles?

Air conditioners emit lot of hot air too. So ban ACs? Nowadays, lots of hazardous chemicals are used for agriculture which cause cancer and other diseases. Should we ban them and ‘go organic’ immediately? Many such examples can be given.

If you think only plastic industry is affected, you are wrong. Everyone is! Just imagine buying sugar, salt, bread, biscuits, wafers, water, soft drinks, fish, mutton, soup or any liquid food items like juice, sambhar, gravy items etc. So instead of banning, we need to learn how to “Manage Waste”. If banning plastic solves the issue, please ask how to save environment by using more paper which is three times more harmful and yet doesn’t serve the purpose. So, targeting the end users without addressing the issues related to the sources is not going to solve the problem. Can the government force the industry – FMG, Pharma, Beverages, Milk producers etc. from using plastic for their several purposes?

So, again, should we not correct our habits rather than banning all products and gadgets? Can’t we make rational use all resources so we make our next generation lives better and healthy? The issue is not about bans. I stress, it is all about waste management. Even in the West and North America which have societies with good civic habits, all plastics are not banned. That is why the government banned plastic below specified  microns whose usage was the worst in damaging the  environment.

To conclude, there is more noise against plastics than paper since former is not biodegradable. It is also possible to recycle paper. Even the paper industry, which uses certain types of wood for pulp, is nowadays forced by corporate responsibility, legislation and civic pressure to replant more trees.

The solution lies in implementing proper waste management process at all levels. Plastics too can be reused as detailed above. Maharashtra government has brought in a total ban on all plastics which I feel, is impossible to implement. They are now excluding one item after the other starting with milk.  The result is ‘plastics-packing’ will continue to happen and it will be the end users like you and I, who will be harassed for even possessing them. Looks like an absurd situation.

(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)

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