THE recent situation in New Delhi has brought to light the severe air pollution affecting the city, which shrouded the capital in a grey haze of toxic smog this last week as the air quality recorded its worst level since January. Unfortunately this is not the first time the capital and other areas have been enveloped in toxic fumes.
Fortunately measures are being taken to attempt to reduce air pollution and with it plastic waste.
Telangana’s Mulugu district, recently launched an initiative called ‘Give 1 Kg Plastic Waste To Get 1 Kg Rice’ across 174 villages. The 10-day programme comes ahead of a soon-to-be imposed ban on the use of single-use plastic items like straws, spoons, glasses, carry bags, and so on.
Around 2,400 kilos of plastic items were collected from this initiative on the very first day itself. 31,000 kilos of plastic was collected in total.
District Collector C Narayana Reddy explains the reason behind giving out free rice.
“Rice is only an incentive to educate people about plastic waste and why it needs to be banned in the region. Our district is famous for wildlife sanctuaries and temples that attract thousands of tourists from across the country. Though the authorities try to maintain cleanliness, the plastic menace still thrives. This initiative is our commitment to make India free from single-use plastic by 2020.”
“The accumulated plastic will be transported to recycling agencies and carry bags will be converted into fuel in cement factories,” says the district collector informed.
5 Initiatives That Show How Plastic Barter Systems Are Booming In India
1) Plastic Waste As School Fees
2) Exchange Plastic Waste With A Meal
3) Deposit Plastic Bottles & Get your Phone Recharged
4) 500 Grams of Plastic Will Give You Free Food
5) Give Waste & Sip On Free Chai
Incorporating the same logic to address the problem of plastic waste, government and non-government organisations across the world are coming up with innovative barter options and taking note of the initiatives already underway in India.
Neighbouring Indonesia for example, which is considered to be the world’s second-largest marine polluter, offers citizens an hour-long bus ride in exchange for ten plastic cups, five medium, plus three plastic bottles.