Delhi to urge Centre to reduce GST on raw materials for single-use plastic alternatives
The institute takes around six months to conduct the tests and there is a waiting period of more than six months on an average, Goyal claimed.The minister said he will take up this issue with the Centre.Rai also said people think a ban on SUP items means a ban on plastic carry bags and that is why there was an urgent need to create awareness among the public.Plastic carry bags having thickness more than 75 microns are not covered under the ban.
Delhi Environment Minister Gopal Rai on Sunday said the city government will request the Centre to reduce GST on raw materials for production of alternatives to single-use plastic (SUP) items.
The minister, who chaired a roundtable with stakeholders to discuss SUP alternatives, said there is a lot of confusion among the public and even some government agencies regarding the items covered under the ban.
''We will conduct a training session for our enforcement teams so that there is no confusion while implementing the ban,'' he said.
The government will also issue a helpline number to register complaints if action is taken for using products that are not banned, Rai said.
The revenue department and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee have constituted 33 and 15 teams, respectively, to ensure enforcement of the ban.
After some stakeholders drew the minister's attention towards high GST rates on raw materials for green alternatives, Rai said the city government would write to the Centre on the issue.
The Delhi government will request Centre to reduce GST rates on raw materials to manufacture alternatives to single-use plastics, he said.
Representatives of units manufacturing green alternatives told the minister that jute and canvas attract a GST rate of five and 18 per cent respectively.
''Products made of recycled newspaper attract eight per cent GST,'' said Vidur Mayor from ''For Earth's Sake'', a zero-waste lifestyle store which deals in plastic-free stationary, household items and personal care products.
Subhash Goyal from the Narela Plastic Welfare Association told the minister that SUP manufacturing units willing to switch over to compostable plastic have to wait for more than a year to obtain necessary permissions.
''Such units require permission from the Central Pollution Control Board. The application needs to be submitted with a report from the Central Institute of Petrochemicals Engineering which tests compostable plastic. The institute takes around six months to conduct the tests and there is a waiting period of more than six months on an average,'' Goyal claimed.
The minister said he will take up this issue with the Centre.
Rai also said people think a ban on SUP items means a ban on plastic carry bags and that is why there was an urgent need to create awareness among the public.
Plastic carry bags having thickness more than 75 microns are not covered under the ban. However, the thickness will have to be increased to 120 microns from December 31.
The Delhi government is also working on a website which will contain all information related to banned SUP items, their alternatives and sources of raw materials to manufacture alternatives.
He said queries and doubts related to SUP items and their alternatives can be mailed to email@example.com.
Rai had on Friday said the city government would issue warning notices to units found violating the ban on 19 SUP items till July 10 and punitive action will be taken thereafter against repeat offenders.
The action will include a fine of up to Rs 1 lakh or a jail term of up to five years or both under the Environment Protection Act, 1986, he had said.
However, the government will give top priority to creating awareness against the use of SUP items and providing their alternatives to people, the minister had said.
Delhi generates 1,060 tonnes of plastic waste per day. SUP is estimated to be 5.6 per cent (or 56 kg per metric tonnes) of the total solid waste in the capital.
On August 12 last year, the Union environment ministry had issued a notification prohibiting the manufacture, import, stocking, distribution, sale and use of identified SUP commodities, including polystyrene and expanded polystyrene, from July 1 this year.
The identified SUP items include earbuds, plastic sticks for balloons, flags, candy sticks, ice-cream sticks, polystyrene (thermocol), plates, cups, glasses, forks, spoons, knives, straws, trays, wrapping or packaging films around sweets boxes, invitation cards, cigarette packets, plastic or PVC banners of less than 100microns and stirrers.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)