Ban on the Use of Single-use Plastics
On June 5th, World Environment Day, the AAP Punjab government announced that it would place a ban on the use of single-use plastics in the state to check environmental degradation. This was in accordance with the Union Environment Ministry notification of August 2021 and its earlier advisory to states and union territories to phase out single-use plastic.
Speaking at a virtual event, Rahul Tewari, Secretary of Science, Technology and Environment stated that the Punjab government is committed to making Punjab “clean, green and pollution-free”.
Effective 1st July 2022, the Punjab government has banned 19 single-use plastic items including ear buds, plastic sticks for balloons, plastic flags, candy sticks, thermocups, plates, cups, glasses, forks, spoons, knives, trays, pipes, sweets boxes, invitation cards, wrapping or packing around cigarette packets.. Manufacturing, import, storage etc. of films, plastic or PVC banners below 100 microns, stickers etc. are not permitted.
Public Awareness Campaigns
On 5th Aug 2022, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann launched a massive state-wide campaign from Dhuri to sensitize people to the harmful effects of single-use plastic and to encourage them to replace single-use plastics with eco-friendly products.
The CM addressed the whole state via videoconferencing from Dhuri. Stakeholders were invited to the event, made aware about the ban on polythenes and Single Use Plastic, and urged to use biodegradable materials. Experts from Punjab Pollution Control Board shared their tips on how to reduce the use of plastic in daily life. Jute bags were also distributed to the citizens of Dhuri.Similar functions were held at all districts simultaneously on the same day where Ministers / MPs / MLAs with Deputy Commissioners and local officials interacted with the common people and educated them about the ban on Polythenes.