Kerala

War against plastic: focus on capital

The spotlight will be on Thiruvananthapuram in the context of an Indo-German project that seeks to prevent marine litter including plastics and microplastics.

The man-made menace poses a grave threat to coastal and marine ecosystems.

Kerala is one of three States, the others being Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh (riverine waste), where the project 'Circular Economy Solutions (CES) Preventing Marine Litter in Ecosystems' is being implemented.

In Kerala, the State-level focus will largely be on an action plan and related interventions on single-use plastics (SUP). Thiruvananthapuram would be the city in focus where ground-level activities would be taken up in selected city corporation wards, Rachna Arora, Team Leader, CES Project, GIZ India, told The Hindu on the sidelines of a stakeholder workshop held on Wednesday for developing a framework to take the project forward.

GIZ, a German federal government agency for international cooperation, has partnered the Centre for Environment and Development (CED), for the project that is geared towards providing technical, institutional and accompanying support and capacity building to fight the battle against plastic waste.

''We will be working in selected coastal wards. With the CED and other agencies, we had carried out studies in eight of the wards where we assessed the hotspot areas, where and how much plastic is entering through canals and such. But we would like to scale up the activity,'' Ms. Arora says.

The project will cover waste inventorisation and characterisation of drainage patterns, planning and implementation of demonstration projects in selected wards to prevent inflow of plastic litter, promotion of alternatives and circular economy business models, green protocols for sectors like tourism, support for EPR activities, and capacity building of corporation staff.

The Indo-German project assumes significance against the backdrop of the ban on single-use plastics that came into force from July 1 this year and the requirements linked to Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR).

''The idea is to look at not just the international practices, but co-create solutions for the local actors. One of the major challenges is awareness about which items are banned and what comes under EPR,'' Ms. Arora says.

She points to solutions such as avoiding unnecessary packaging of products. But plastic being an ''omnipresent material',' finding affordable substitutes also is important, she adds.


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Printable version | Aug 10, 2022 8:03:31 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/war-against-plastic-focus-on-capital/article65754495.ece