Plastic ban yet to make an impact

Staff Reporter

KOCHI: Plastic ban implemented in the city seems to have not achieved the desired results, thanks to loopholes in the regulatory mechanism.

Enforcement agencies are groping in the dark, as plastic items with thickness of 31 microns flood the market. The ban is only for items with thickness less than 30 microns.

Officials of various local bodies carrying out surprise raids in shops were unable to seize several plastic carry bags with thickness of 31 microns. Plastic items with thickness varying from 32 to 35 microns are also available in huge quantities in Ernakulam district.

An official of the Corporation said that there was a lack of awareness among small-scale shop owners. Even after weeks of implementing the ban, they were found distributing low-quality carry bags, he said.

Surprise raids were conducted only in select shops in the city. Distribution of plastic bags and cups below the 30-micron mark is a common sight at marriages.

The Commercial Taxes Department is yet to step up monitoring of vehicles carrying plastic items from neighbouring States. Lack of equipment to check the thickness seems to be a hurdle.

Supplyco move

The State Civil Supplies Corporation Ltd (Supplyco) has decided to control the use of plastic carry bags in a phased manner. Posters seeking the support of customers in avoiding plastic carry bags will be exhibited at Supplyco counters.

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