India

Ban on Single Use Plastics

The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change has notified the Plastic Waste Management Amendment Rules, 2021, on 12th August 2021, prohibiting manufacture, import, stocking, distribution, sale and use of the following identified single use plastic items, which have low utility and high littering potential with effect from the 1st July, 2022:

  1. ear buds with plastic sticks, plastic sticks for balloons, plastic flags, candy sticks, ice-cream sticks, polystyrene [Thermocol] for decoration;
  2. plates, cups, glasses, cutlery such as forks, spoons, knives, straw, trays, wrapping or packing films around sweet boxes, invitation cards, and cigarette packets, plastic or PVC banners less than 100 micron, stirrers.

The notification also prohibits manufacture, import, stocking, distribution, sale and use of plastic carry bags having thickness less than seventy-five microns with effect from 30th September, 2021, and having thickness less than thickness of one hundred and twenty microns with effect from the 31st December, 2022.Also, thirty four states/UTs had already issued notifications/orders to introduce regulations pertaining to complete or partial ban on plastic carry bags and/or identified single-use plastic items over and above Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016, as amended.

The Ministry published draft notification in Gazette of India on 11th March 2021 seeking objections and suggestions from stakeholders within a period sixty days from the date of the publication of the draft notification. The draft notification had also been brought out after prior consultation with concerned line Ministries. The final notification was published after due consideration of all the comments/suggestions received. Further, awareness programmes and capacity building workshops have been organized for stakeholders with respect to ban on identified single use plastics.

The ban on identified single use plastic items was notified vide the Plastic Waste Management Amendment Rules, 2021on 12th August 2021, and is in force from 1st July, 2022. The Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises has schemes to provide support to MSME units, which includes support to such units earlier involved in manufacturing of banned single use plastic items for switching over to alternatives / other products. These schemes provide support in respect of technology upgradation, creating awareness, marketing support, infrastructural support, as per scheme guidelines.

This information was given by the Minister of State for Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Shri Ashwini Kumar Choubey in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.

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