Plastic bags have been seen as a threat to our environment and hence been banned in most parts of India. However a three-member government committee comprising officials of Central Pollution Control Board, Delhi Pollution Control Committee and a retired judge have suggested to high court that a complete ban on plastic bags in New Delhi would not be necessary.
The plastic bags available nowadays are very thin and often left unpicked which leads to their deposition in grounds. The harsh coloring agents used in plastic bags reduce the fertility of soil and pollute the ground water. The committee says the solution to reduce this menace would be to increase the thickness of plastic bags from 20 microns to 40 microns and to discard the use of coloring agents in plastic bags.
"We have to think of ways of controlling the waste, and banning is no solution to this. The committee wants to rope in plastics manufacturers so that we can pin responsibility on them. Once they build a system, they will have no option but to collect the waste. And they will be able to provide the necessary incentive for such collection," said JK Dadoo, secretary environment and member of the committee.
Biodegradable plastic is an ecofriendly option and the committee recommends their use as an alternative. However research work is still on for the development of appropriate types of biodegradable plastics.