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Only some 14 plastic products are banned

Minister for Environment K.C. Karuppannan, Tourism Minister ‘Vellamandi’ Natarajan and S. Valarmathi, Minister for Backward Classes and Minority Welfare, administering the oath at a zonal-level awareness conference in Tiruchi on Friday.M. Moorthy

The plastic industry and those employed in it need not be apprehensive over the State government’s approaching ban as not all of its products are covered under the rule, Environment Minister K.C. Karuppannan said here on Friday.

“An attempt is being to create an impression that all plastic products are being banned. This is not true. Only 20% of them are covered under the ban, which is to come into effect in the State from January 1,” Mr. Karuppannan said.

He was speaking at a regional-level awareness meet on ‘Plastic Pollution Free Tamil Nadu’ here.

Just about 14 products, including plastic bags, cups, non-women carry bags and plates, are covered under the ban. “We are also taking steps to promote alternatives to the banned products. When such eco-friendly alternatives come into widespread use, it will also benefit the farming community,” he observed.

Extensive consultations

The State government has announced the ban on use-and-throw plastics only after extensive consultations and thought.

“We have been pressing for such a ban for two years now. The Chief Minister initially wanted to give about a year’s time before implementing the ban, but subsequently agreed for a six-month deadline,” he said.

Good response

The State has been divided into six zones, and IAS officers have been appointed to review the sensitisation measures being taken up among the people. Usually, there will be some resistance to such new regulations. But the decision has evoked good response from various sections of society. Besides, government departments have already started implementation.

Stating that the move was necessary to protect land, especially agricultural land, from pollution, he said the State government had taken stringent measures to protect land, air and water.

Solid waste management also was posing a challenge to the authorities, as dumping of waste too polluted land. “Our next focus will be on tackling this problem. We are examining the feasibility of generating power from solid waste and it would be adopted across the State,” he said and called upon government officers and stakeholders to extend their full cooperation for successful implementation of the use and throw plastics.

Minister for Tourism, ‘Vellamandi’ N. Natarajan, and Minister for Backward Classes and Minorities Welfare, S. Valarmathi, emphasised the need for effective implementation of the ban and favoured the use of traditional and organic alternatives.

Collectors S.Suresh Kumar (Nagapattinam), V.Santha (Perambalur), A.Annadurai (Thanjavur) M.Vijayalakshmi (Ariyalur) and L.Nirmal Raj (Tiruvarur) and S. Amuthavalli, City Engineer, Tiruchi Corporation, explained the steps being taken for implementing the ban.

T. Shanthi, District Revenue Officer, Tiruchi, and D. Sekar, Member Secretary, Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board, spoke.

Earlier, Mr. Karuppannan handed over cloth bags as alternatives to plastic ones to a group of students from Seva Sangam Girls Higher Secondary School.

The Minister also administered a pledge against use-and-throw plastics to the students and other participants.


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