Shimla (Jan 12): Himachal Pradesh government would be considering imposing ban on use of plastic disposables – cups, plates and glasses – to further strengthen the movement of protecting environment from non-biodegradable products. This was stated by Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal to the visiting Central team consisting of Director, Ministry of administrative Reforms Satish Kumar, and Dr A Kasturirangan from the Urban Planning, Administrative Staff College of India at Hyderabad, who called on him here today.
The Chief Minister said that the state had taken lead by initiating various steps to protect environment. He said that Himachal Pradesh was first to ban green felling, use of recycled and plastic carry bags. He said that the state had successfully launched the removal of plastic waste from public places where the awakened people of the state had come forward to lend their supportive hand in making the same a mass movement. He said that a number of Non-Governmental Organizations had also been formed to supplement the endeavours of the state government directed towards environment protection which were rendering yeoman service to achieve the objective. He said that banning of recycled and plastic carry bags had voluntarily been adopted by the people of the state, which had ensured success to the programme and with the banning of the plastic cups, plates and glasses the users would be provided with alternate paper products for disposable use by them on various occasions.
Dhumal said that the state government was also considering transfer of all the fines collected on account of environmental challans to the Environment Fund for onward transfer to deputy commissioners to implement various environment protection programmes more effectively in their respective districts. He said that eco-clubs had been constituted in every educational institution and waste paper recycling units set up in different departments to optimum utilization of waste paper and the tourism department would soon be coming out with pamphlets on ‘Mindful Travel in Himachal Pradesh’ to create environmental awareness amongst the visitors to the state. He said that plastic waste collection drive had been launched by paying people @ Rs. 3 per kg. for use in metalling of roads and sustainably deal with the littering of plastic waste. He said that cement kilns had also been advised to process plastic waste for power generation.
He said that monitoring and regulation was being carried through effective implementation of the provisions of ban on plastic carry bags and on littering of non-biodegradable waste and by strengthening the mechanism devised for sustainable plastic waste management through ‘Eco-monitoring Scheme’ and ‘Environmental Audit Scheme’.