Indian State uses seized plastic to make roads, repair potholes
The Kerala government had also ordered that at least 10 percent of the roads built by the local bodies in 2016-17 should use plastic.
Following Kerala's footsteps, the central Indian state of Nagpur's civic body, the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) is using the seized plastic products to repair public properties like the potholes and asphalt roads.
Under the process, the civic body will first use the seized quantity and use 8 percent of it, the only permissible amount, in its hot mix plant and later give it to other departments such as Nagpur Improvement Trust (NIT) or the state’s public works department (PWD), if it has leftover stock.
But skeptics are doubting whether the measure would be sufficient to deal with the plastic issue. Kerala, which already has the mechanism in motion for a few years now, produces nearly 480 tons of plastic waste a day, according to a local self-governing agency, Kerala Suchitwa Mission.
In 2016, Kerala's government ordered a ban on the use of plastic items below 50 microns, but the manufacture of plastic hasn't been banned yet.
According to the Week magazine, the "ambitious project to recycle plastic waste by using them to make roads has not helped, the administration admitted in response to a query under the Right to Information Act."
The government had also ordered that at least 10 percent of the roads built by the local bodies in 2016-17 should use plastic, another measure was introduced to double the use of plastic a year later.
The Chamber of Associations of Maharashtra Industry and Trade (CAMIT) has expressed dissatisfaction over state government’s four amendments relating to the plastic bag, the Times of India reported.
CAMIT president Dipen Agrawal said the government’s amendments would be welcomed if the packaging of perishable and non-perishable products is exempted.
"Despite assurance by CM Devendra Fadnavis, the notification mentions only exemption to kirana (local grocery) stores. Plastic is required for packaging in other trades like automobiles, vegetables, fruits, food etc."
"All parts of automobiles are packed in plastic and transported in cartons. It is essential to prevent damage. We are hopeful that the CM will soon issue another notification," he added.