Charity begins at home.’ So, India being the global host for ‘World Environment Day – 2018,’ pledged itself to eliminate all single-use plastic by 2022.
In his address on the World Environment Day 2018, on June 5, the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi said that the per capita plastic consumption in India is much lower than in many parts of the developed world. “However, our national mission on cleanliness and sanitation – Swachh Bharat Abhiyan – has a special focus on “plastic waste management. Let us all join together to beat plastic pollution and make this planet a better place to live.”
Ever year ‘World Environment Day’ is organized around a theme that focuses attention on a particularly pressing environmental concern. So, the theme for 2018 is: “Beat Plastic Pollution,” which calls to come together to combat one of the great environmental challenges of our time – the plastic menace. The theme appeals everyone on this earth to make changes in everyday lives to reduce the heavy burden of plastic pollution on our natural places, our wildlife – and our own health.
While plastic has many valuable uses, people have become over-reliant on single-use or disposable plastic. Thus Plastic is now a threatening menace to humanity. It is now a known fact that a lot of it never makes it to the recycling bin; a lot of it is non-bio-degradable. Plastic pollution is already having a deadly impact on our marine ecosystem. Scientists and fishermen alike have pointed to signs of trouble. These include declining fish catches, warming ocean temperatures, and vanishing habitats. Marine litter especially micro-plastic, is a major trans-boundary problem. India is preparing to join the “Clean Seas Campaign” and make its contribution towards saving our oceans. Plastic pollution is now entering into our food chain. In fact, micro plastics have now even entered basic food like salt, bottled water and tap water.
India will join UN Environment’s Clean Seas campaign, which seeks to turn the tide on marine litter. India has 7,500 km of coastline – the 7th longest in Asia. As part of this commitment, the government will establish a national and regional marine litter action campaign as well as a program to measure the total marine plastic footprint in India’s coastal waters.
India, in collaboration with UN Environment also launched a joint World Environment Day Report: “Single-use Plastics: A roadmap for Sustainability”. Presenting case studies from more than 60 countries, the report analyzes the complex relationships in our plastics economy and offers an approach to rethink how the world produces, uses and manages single-use plastics.
And, the Indian Board of Control to ‘green cricket’ across the country, and a pledge to make 100 national monuments litter-free.