PATNA: If Bihar’s estimated 11 crore population stops using plastic, there will be a 60% reduction in plastic waste production, claim scientists of the Bihar State Pollution Control Board (BSPCB).
The remaining 40% plastic is used for packaging. “The total amount of solid waste produced in Patna is 800 tonnes per day. However, no data exists for the quantity of plastic that the city produces per day,” BSPCB chairman Ashok Kumar Ghosh told this reporter on Saturday.
As plastic is less expensive, it is overused. Ghosh said, “When plastic is disposed of in landfill sites, it does not decompose at a fast rate and pollutes the soil in that area. Besides, when plastic is burned, it produces toxic gases that cause respiratory problems. Plastic pollution, therefore, is poisoning water bodies and land, harming marine life and badly affecting our health.”
According to Patna Municipal Corporation’s (PMC) deputy commissioner Vishal Anand, several campaigns to curb the use of plastic have been carried out by the civic body in the past.
“Last month, we seized nearly 250kg plastic bags whose thickness was less than 50 microns. While confectioneries, gift shops and grocery stores have slowly started using other alternatives, street vendors mostly use plastic bags that are cheaper and more harmful,” he said and added the PMC was conducting talks with the state rural works department to recycle plastic and use it for constructing roads.