Ban Single Use Plastic Water Bottles and Cutlery in Airline Industry

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Dear All,

I am Kamal, a common man with uncommon vision of making this world a beautiful place with the best of my abilities. I’m thankful for all those difficult people in my life, they have shown me exactly who I do not want to be. We are in the middle of a global pandemic. Plastic is everywhere, from the top of Mount Everest to the depths of the ocean to the north pole. Plastic has been found in every species of animal in the world, from plankton to polar bears. Single-use plastics take five seconds to make, five minutes to use and 500 years to biodegrade, so when we throw them away there is no such place as “away.”

I would like to express my concern for single use plastic in Airline Industry and Medical Industry, wherein the regime intervention is utmost vital. I urge one and all enforce local governmental representatives to lay out a road map for the plastics manufacturers to produce biodegradable alternatives and create a new line of business (Which promotes sustainable Start-Up opportunities for our Youth). It seems to me that the principle that the polluter should pay is an important one, and that there should be incentives for individuals to do some of the tidying up as well.

I know that Mumbai Airport has introduced refill stations, but the problem is that people are usually already in the queue for security before they remember that they have a full bottle of water. Most people cannot drink half a litre of water straight off. Airports could look at how to dispose of those liquids while encouraging people to keep the bottles. That would result in more reuse. That is a challenge for the airports and the transport industry to think about today.

I request the Government to send a clear message to industry that all single-use plastics should be recycled, and that if that does not happen, they should simply be banned and we should move to a system of penalizing heavily. Consumers want to do the right thing, and they deserve to know that companies are doing it too. There is a huge growth opportunities in India for Plastics due to lower per capita consumption as compared to world average. Flexible packaging industry poised for strong growth due to huge and diversified consumer base. New applications / innovations in Packaging development is driving growth in India. Which puts a greater challenge for the "Plastic Ban" to be effective.

We must prevent waste from entering our environment, and that will bring social, economic and environmental benefits. People are happier if the streets and parks are litter-free, our economy works better if we make smart use of limited resources, and our wildlife is protected if we keep plastic out of the sea. When people win, the economy wins and the environment wins. I look forward to a good debate and to hearing about the exciting work that many activists have been doing in their local areas.

One of the reasons we have plastic packaged water is that it is convenient to have on the go, so if we can overcome some of the barriers to convenience for refilling clean and healthy water that would be a wonderful step in the right direction to this wider problem of plastic pollution and your resilient direction for the course correction would definitely be encouraging.

I will finish on a positive note by sharing with you that as a practising Vegan and trying to strive towards "Zero-Waste" and "Minimalistic" lifestyle by travelling with my reusable bottle, I feel proud that I contribute to the betterment of mother earth.

A Loyal Indian Citizen,
Kamal Ganatra