Despite all the claims of progress, the world has not yet been able to find the right way to dispose of plastic waste. The result is that there are so many piles of plastic waste around the world that if all the garbage is put together, it can become a mountain three times as big as Mount Everest.
Today i.e. from July 1, the ban on single-use plastic (single-use plastic) that is discarded after use will come into effect. Such plastic items include things from polythene bags to water bottles, plastic cups, bowls, plates and straws. Even before this, while addressing the nation on 15 August 2019, the Prime Minister had talked about banning single-use plastic from October 2, 2019. But then it was not possible because banning plastic is not as easy as it seems. But now with the kind of determination and strictness shown by the government, it has become clear that now they are not going to take a step back.
A major obstacle in banning the use of plastic is that many people associated with the plastic industry in the country are being said to be unemployed. According to the Central Pollution Control Board, at present there are about 700 such large units in the country which are making one-time use plastic items. Big businessmen or industrialists can still move towards alternative arrangements, but small businessmen whose families are dependent on the business of these things, may face a crisis of livelihood.
This situation also puts the government in a dilemma because every democratic system is and should be committed to the interest of the most marginalized section. Many such people can be seen in the markets who carry bundles of bags on bicycles to different shopkeepers and make arrangements for the nutrition of their families by giving them the items they need. In such a situation, a complete ban on plastic can distract millions of people. Right now the situation is that some well-known companies have also urged the government to reconsider this decision as they do not even have proper options for packaging etc. of their product.
In the last two-three decades, plastic has become such an integral part of people’s habits and lifestyle that without it a comfortable life cannot be imagined. Today carrying a cloth bag with you seems to be a thing of the past. People expect that the shopkeeper will give them the bag (Keri Baig). Now since plastic bags are relatively cheap, the shopkeeper gives the deal in the bag. Paper bags are usually not strong and the cost of cloth bags is enough to sell to a normal customer. In such a situation, both the shopkeeper and the customer are not able to get rid of the temptation of plastic bags.
Then there is also the possibility that the means adopted as an alternative to plastic are more dangerous for the environment than the use of plastic. Suppose the common man makes the use of paper bags a habit. We all know that the more the use of paper increases, the more the crisis on the existence of trees will increase. In such a situation, excessively encouraging the use of paper cannot be considered a very good option.
Psychologists believe that if people are forced to give up using plastic by putting extra pressure on them, then it is possible that they may adopt such alternatives in response, whose production uses more harmful chemicals and which are almost harmful to the environment. be just as harmful. In such a situation, it would be better to make people aware of the harm of plastic and encourage them to adopt eco-friendly alternatives. But sometimes people also have to resort to pressure to explain their interest.
In 1907, when a scientist named Leo Bakeland of New York created a synthetic plastic and named it Bakelite, then no one could have imagined that plastic would become a major threat to the environment all over the world. Polythene was invented by accident in the year 1933. But due to its lightness and strength of fibers, it became popular on sight. In 1965, a Swedish company even took a patent for a polythene bag. Gradually, polythene went on to dominate other areas of life and cloth bags, paper bags were almost out of circulation by plastic bags. Soon the plastics industry became a major industry in the world. In developing countries, the livelihood of a large section of the population is related to its production and marketing.
But using plastic also has its dangers. The world first adopted plastic with great care considering its facilities and did not pay attention to the challenges arising from it. As a result, piles of plastic waste started piling up everywhere. The trouble is that generations pass until the plastic is completely disposed of. Burning plastic waste is even more harmful for the environment because burning plastic releases many toxic gases which make the environment suffocating. Despite all the claims of progress, the world has not been able to find the right way to dispose of plastic waste so far. The result is that there are so many piles of plastic waste in the world that if all the garbage is put together, it can become a mountain three times as big as Mount Everest.
We can easily see the consequences of dumping plastic waste on the roads of the country. Every day news is published in the newspapers to the effect that doctors have removed large quantities of bags from the stomach of a cow. Thousands of animals get infected and die every year due to plastic lying in the stomach. Perhaps this is the reason why the world is now becoming aware of minimizing the use of plastic, especially single-use plastic items. Importantly, developing countries have demonstrated greater awareness in this direction than developed countries.
For the first time in 2002, Bangladesh completely banned plastic bags. Kenya banned one-time use plastics in 2017. Zimbabwe banned plastic containers called polystyrene in 2017 and imposed fines on those who violated the rule. Britain imposed a tax on using plastic bags. Although the US has not made any policy against single use plastic at the federal level, but some states there have taken the initiative to ban the use of plastic at their level.
The increasing use of plastic cannot be said at all in the interest of humanity. Controlling the use of plastic can be difficult, but nothing is impossible for a human being, provided he makes a determination once. If there is enough cooperation at the level of citizens along with the efforts of the government, then how will it not be possible to get rid of plastic?