Minimum thickness of plastic carry bags increased: Javadekar

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New Delhi, March 18 (IANS) The Centre on Friday notified the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016, in suppression of previous Plastic Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2011, by increasing minimum thickness of plastic carry bags from 40 to 50 microns.

“The minimum thickness of plastic carry bags has been increased from 40 microns to 50 microns,” said Minister of state for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar.

“The rules, which were admissible up to municipal areas, have now been extended to all villages. Notifying the new Plastic Waste Management Rules is a part of the revamping of all Waste Management Rules,” said the minister.

This would help in achieving Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of Swachh Bharat, he said adding that “cleanliness is the essence of health and tourism”.

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He said 15,000 tonnes of plastic waste is generated every day, of which 9,000 tonnes is collected and processed, but 6,000 tonnes of plastic waste is not being collected.

The Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016 aim to increase minimum thickness of plastic carry bags from 40 to 50 microns and stipulate minimum thickness of 50 micron for plastic sheets also to facilitate collection and recycle of plastic waste; Expand the jurisdiction of applicability from the municipal area to rural areas, because plastic has reached rural areas also.

They also aim to bring in the responsibilities of producers and generators, both in plastic waste management system and to introduce collect back system of plastic waste by the producers/brand owners, as per extended producers responsibility.

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Among other objectives, the rules also aim to introduce collection of plastic waste management fee through pre-registration of the producers, importers of plastic carry bags/multilayered packaging and vendors selling the same for establishing the waste management system.

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