Indian ships to ban single-use plastics on board

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NEW DELHI:The Directorate General of Shipping has come out with an order prohibiting a large number of single-use plastics in Indian ships and foreign ships in Indian waters from January next.

Not only a large number of single-use plastics will be prohibited to be used on board Indian ships but will also be banned in foreign ships when in Indian waters.

The list of items contain bags, trays, containers, food packaging film, milk bottles, freezer bags, shampoo bottles, ice cream containers, bottles for water and other drinks, dispensing containers for cleaning fluid and biscuits trays.

Items prohibited also include hot drink cups, insulated food packaging, protective packaging for fragile items, microwave dishes, ice cream tubs, potato chips bags and bottle caps.

Besides, the Directorate has banned use of single-use plastic cutlery, plates and cups, up to 10 litres of bottles for water and other drinks, garbage and shopping bags and dispensing containers for cleaning fluids which are less than 10 litres volume with immediate impact.

The decision has been taken in larger public interest by the Directorate General of Shipping following an appeal by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 15 to “take the first big step” towards freeing India of single-use plastics.

According to International Maritime Organisation (IMO), marine litter presents a huge problem in oceans with some scientists warning that by 2050, the quantity of plastics in the oceans will outweigh the fishes.

JP GUPTA

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