Our Share in curbing the menace of Plastic

madathil mhanian By madathil mhanian, 27th Sep 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Society & Issues

Using less plastic must have rubbed on us, almost a decade back. Now as the menace is looming over our head, here is a peep at what an individual can do to the society.

Our Share in curbing the menace of Plastic

Anymore article written about the menace of plastic will be out of place and may be a crime as well if it is not written on a recycled paper or recyclable one. The situation is really grim, the time is ticking out and very soon the issue will blow up fully, if it is not yet already. Still how many of us care to do our share so that we can be sure that at least you are not contributing to the issue, on the contrary helping to curb it by doing whatever you can within your own mite. Let us segregate the issue one after the other.
Separating the Waste: Authorities have taken notice (already late? don’t ask me) of the situation and released press note, announcement over audio-video media, public address system and door to door campaigning by the local bodies to educate the public about the menace of putting the recyclable and non-recyclable waste together which make it difficult for them when it is full truck load. But who cares; still people keep just one waste bin in the home and they think handing over the same is more than enough when the waste collection truck honks at the gates. Result? A well-conceived idea is not implemented the way it is designed to be.
Use Quality plastic: At least in this front, things are far better. Spot checks by the authorities in the shops, hotel and other merchant establishments ensured that they are using plastic bags that are above the specified Microns thickness. Even then due to lack of enough force, the authorities cannot curb the sale of non-recyclable grade bags from all the shops.
Health hazard: what is more alarming is the fact that such plastic bags are used by way-side eateries and even some hotels to pack hot items like curry, tea, coffee when the customers ask for ‘takeaways’ or more popularly known in India as “Parcels”. They even use a plastic sheet in the plate before serving you oven hot ‘Idlis’, ‘Dosai’ or the favorite “biryani”. God only knows (I doubt though…) what quality of plastic are used in manufacturing of the same and the result of hot drink or the eatable reacting with those flimsy plastic.
Littering Plastic: From the wrapper of the toffee to the nice colorful plastic bag in which the cloth shops or the fancy store from which you bought the marriage gift are thrown indiscriminately at will and wish. Recently I attended a marriage reception. Since the beeline to greet the couple was long, I patiently waited for some time in the aisles, because the dining hall also was equally crowded. Believe me by the time I reached the ‘stage’, where the couple greets the guests and vice versa, there were around ten plastic bags strewn under the chairs. Guests used them to bring in their gifts and since they no longer need them, they have dumped it there. Imagine a city where in twenty such receptions is taking place in a given day, the number of bags dumped like this.
Use less plastic: This is one area where in we have made only little or no progress at all. Be it at the kirana (neighborhood grocery store) or the department store, people ask for a plastic bag to carry back the purchases. Be it a small purchase of just two-three items or a monthly requirement for the family, only the size of the bag changes, but people insists for one; two at times when the items are more. It has even become a habit for the shop keeper, even if you don’t ask for one, they give you one. I have to insist with shopkeepers to take back the plastic and give me a paper bag. Then they look at me as if I am an alien. If the paper bag is not available, I just transfer them to the cloth bag I always carry with me on such shopping trips.
You can be more kind to the mother earth, believe me you need not start any big movement. Just say a Big “NO” when the shopkeeper gives you a plastic bag next time. Care to carry a cloth bag in your car or two-wheeler always so that they can be used to bring back the purchases. Do not to forget to replace them back in your vehicle first thing in the morning. A Family is a micro unit of the society and if that micro unit functions the right way then the society, city, state, country and the whole world functions the right way.
TAIL-PIECE: Recently I was at a fruit shop with my twelve year old daughter to purchase some fruits. While waiting in the queue at the counter to pay for it, I heard the delivery boy of a truck calling out my vehicle’s number to move it further so that he can bring in the vehicle close to the delivery ramp. I told my daughter to pay for it and get it packed by the time I am back. Coming back I heard the firm voice of my daughter talking to the girl packing the fruits; ‘No Plastic bag please, pack them in a paper Bag’. Yes, I have done my share to curb this menace.


Cloth Bag, Menace, Paper Bags, Plastic, Recycling, Segregation, Society, Your Share

Meet the author

author avatar madathil mhanian
from Coimbatore, worked as a Zonal Sales Manager for a Pharma company. At present earns as a Freelance Trainer for Pharma companies.

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author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
27th Sep 2014 (#)

For sure we should avoid buying plastics when we can and should always recycle if we cannot avoid buying plastics.

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author avatar madathil mhanian
28th Sep 2014 (#)

thank you Mark Gordon Brown for this comment on my articles and your role as a moderator for going through many of my articles as well

madathil mhanian

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author avatar Rajani venu
29th Sep 2014 (#)

All of us have to work towards it..very nice article....

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