Himachal Pradesh bans disposable plastic products

Greater Kashmir

Shimla, Oct 2: After the success of ban on polythene bags, Himachal Pradesh Sunday imposed a ban on disposable plastic products. Packaged drinking water can, however, still be sold in plastic bottles.
“A complete ban on use and storage of plastic cups, glasses and plates has come into effect,” a government spokesperson told IANS.
He said strict regulations have been formulated to deal with people using plastic products, including a fine of upto Rs.5,000.
Last month, Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal asked the central government to impose a ban on use of metallic packaging material and other material being marketed in plastic packaging to check environmental degradation. After imposing a ban on the use of all types of polythene bags made of non-biodegradable materials Oct 2, 2009, the state cabinet in January this year decided to include disposable plastic products under the ambit of ban from Aug 15.
However, on the plea of the traders, the ban was delayed for over a month.
The government also launched a campaign “Polythene Hatao, Paryavaran Bachao” (remove polythene, save environment).
The government has so far collected 104 tonnes of plastic. Of this, 40 tonnes have been used in road construction by adding shredded plastic waste to tar.
The spokesperson said 150 km of roads would be surfaced in the state by adding molten plastic with liquid tar this fiscal. Last year, 42 km of roads were built using this material. According to Public Works Department officials, road construction cost per km using bitumen is around Rs.12 lakh. But by mixing plastic, the cost came down to Rs.11 lakh per km. IANS