Tamil Nadu

Pathetic implementation of ban on single use plastics, says NGT

Plastic waste choke the Kalingarayan Canal in Erode in Tamil Nadu on November 11, 2021.

Plastic waste choke the Kalingarayan Canal in Erode in Tamil Nadu on November 11, 2021.

The southern bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has issued directions to the Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary and Environment department secretary to revive the steering committee and the regional monitoring committees to take all effective steps to implement the ban on single use plastics in the State in letter and spirit.

The Bench said this was required for protecting the environment and to protect the health of the people and living organisms in the Universe. “The government must also understand the need for protecting the environment which has been expressed by World leaders in the recent UN Climate Change Conference (COP 26) held at Glasgow,” the bench said.

The court took note of the submissions made by the TNPCB and said certain steps had been taken by the authorities for implementation of the ban and closure orders had been issued against manufacturing units of such plastic articles.

However, the applicant submitted photographs of the use of single use plastic, which the Tribunal said “shows the pathetic condition of implementation of ban on one time and throwaway plastic bags and it is still continuing at the grass root levels especially by small vendors”.

The bench further said if certain effective steps are taken by the regulators to trace out the sources from where these vendors were procuring the plastic bags, they could effectively take action against those persons who are violating the ban.

Pointing out that the Chennai district collector too had some pro-active role to play to implement the ban, the bench said steps would have to be taken by the Government to provide some assistance to such vendors by providing bio-degradable bags at subsidised rates through government agencies.

“Mere issuance of notice ban orders will not be sufficient unless there is a will power, the Government agencies who are expected to implement the ban wll not be able to implement it in letter and spirit,” the bench said. Continuous monitoring and effective steps to penalise the persons responsible for flouting the ban would be required by the agencies.

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Printable version | May 26, 2022 2:23:22 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/pathetic-implementation-of-ban-on-single-use-plastics-says-ngt/article37452181.ece