India’ Situation with Plastic

It is common across India to find sewers and drainage systems clogged by single use plastic bags which cause severe cases of malaria and dengue due to the increased population of mosquitoes that breed on these flooded sewers. This not only creates a litter problem but also leads to spread of multiple diseases.

Non-woven bags are passed off as cloth bags due to texture, but they are essentially polypropylene bags. Even paper cups have a layer of plastic in-between them to withstand temperature and be rigid. Plastic ban is ineffective so far due to difficult enforcement and no proper alternatives.

Plastic chemicals can be absorbed by the body— Tests show billions of people globally are drinking water contaminated by plastic particles, with 83% of samples found to be polluted. Some of these compounds found in plastic have been found to alter hormones or have other potential human health effects.

As per an estimate, on an average, 30kg of plastic has been found in the guts of cows in the country and 20 cows die per day as a result of ingesting plastic bags and having their digestive systems clogged by them. One million sea birds and 100,000 marine mammals are killed annually from plastic in our oceans around the world.

  • In India, total generation of plastic waste is estimated to be approximately 5.6 million tonnes per annum
  • More than 15,000 tones of plastic waste are generated in the major cities in India every day, of which 6,000 tones remain uncollected and littered
  • Cities like Bangalore alone generates nearly 10,50,000 KG of plastic garbage a day
  • India’s contribution to plastic waste that is dumped into the Indian ocean every year is a massive 60%
  • Packaging represents the single-largest sector of plastics use and accounts for 35% of plastic consumption.
  • Plastic waste constitutes on average 9-10% of the local waste collected daily.