New Delhi, Aug 29 (IANS) The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Tuesday asked the Delhi government to find ways to dispose off the banned plastic bags it has seized.
Following the NGT on August 10 reiterating its earlier ban on polythene with thickness below 50 microns, the Delhi government and civic bodies informed that about 8,000 kgs of banned poly bags were seized. But as the low-grade plastic could not be recycled, its disposal remains a challenge.
On Tuesday, the bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar instructed the Delhi Government to figure out ways to dispose off it, by the next hearing on September 5.
“How will you dispose the sized plastic bags, inform us,” it told the Delhi government.
According to experts, this low-grade plastic has good calorific value and could be used in the waste-to-energy plants of which Delhi has four. However, burning such plastic for producing energy comes at the cost of high emissions.
Delhi Environment Minister Imran Hussain said on August 23 that a total of 7,739 kg of the banned plastic bags were seized and 492 challans and notices were issued under a drive by his ministry. Under the drive, Rs 2,90,000 was collected as environmental compensation.
According to a 2015 report by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), plastic comprises 10.14 per cent of total waste generated in the city.
Earlier, the tribunal had asked the city government to ban the low grade plastic with effect from January 1. But the directive could not be implemented.
The bench later asked the Delhi government and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee to file an affidavit and inform it about how its directions were being implemented in the city.
For now, the tribunal has put an interim ban on low grade plastic bags.
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