Delhi has registered the highest number of complaints (634) on the Central Pollution Control Board’s app concerning the ban on 19 single-use plastic items that came into effect on July 1, 2022, according to the Centre for Science and Environment’s annual State of Environment report.
However, only 59% of these complaints have been resolved four months later.
The Centre for Science and Environment’s annual State of Environment report, released on Thursday, reveals that the ban on single-use plastic items is being poorly implemented in India, with these items still frequently found across the country.
The report analyzed data from the Central Pollution Control Board’s app, which allows people to report the manufacturing, production, stocking, sale, or use of such items.
By September 2022, the app had received 3,619 complaints from 21 states and union territories, and by November, the number had risen to 5,071 from 22 states and UTs, but only 1,148 or 22.6% of these complaints were resolved.
As of November, the number of complaints received from 22 states and UTs and 124 cities had reached 5,071. Among them, 1,657 were filed against cutlery items, 1,286 against carry bags, and 1,033 against ‘other items.’
New Delhi reported the highest number of complaints at 634, followed by Lucknow with 294 and Ghaziabad with 215. Unfortunately, only 1,148 or 22.64% of the total complaints filed were addressed within the same month.
Despite the government’s notification of environmental compensation (EC) in September 2022 for violating the ban on single-use plastic items, statistics show that their use continues in the market throughout the country.
The EC can be imposed on various parties, including producers, manufacturers, stockists/distributors, importers, brand owners, commercial establishments, street vendors, municipal commissioners/village panchayats, waste generators, and plastic waste processors.
Citizen survey reveals banned plastics
The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) conducted a citizen science survey from July to December 2022, where citizens submitted geotagged photos of banned single-use plastic items found in their locality.
Maharashtra (14.29%) and Delhi (12.24%) had the highest reporting of banned items, followed by Kerala and Tamil Nadu (10.20%). The survey revealed that 35.53% of all complaints were reported against carry bags, followed by plastic straws (22.37%) and cutlery (18.42%).
Despite the government’s notification of environmental compensation to be levied for a violation, the use of banned items continues unabated across the country, as revealed by the survey.
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