Tamil Nadu industries to be plastic free zones from January 1

COIMBATORE: in Tamil Nadu () will be ‘Plastic Free Zones’ from January 1. The Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) has asked all industries in the state to declare their industry premises as “plastic free zones” and asked them to paste stickers prominently stating their industry is a .

The green watchdog has asked companies to undertake a massive campaign in and around their industry (10 km radius) about the need to stay away from plastics. Industries should provide notices to suppliers, customers and visitors, detailing the banned plastic items and to practice use of alternate to banned plastic items, TNPCB stated.

They must ensure that the banned plastic items are not used in the canteen, offices, official meetings among others. Industries should from a ““one time use and throwaway plastics avoidance committee” comprising top, middle and lower level officials with responsibility to create and spread awareness among the employees and community around 10 Km radius, the green watchdog said.

Industries can carry out the above awareness programme under ‘Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)’, it said. “Further it is informed that the above activities carried out by the industry will be taken into account for ‘Green Awards’, issued by Government of Tamil Nadu,” TNPCB said.

Industries should provide permanent display board made of metal (not in PVC Flex) with pictorial representation of the banned “one time use and throwaway plastics” items at the entrance of the industrial unit informing the visitors about the implementation of the ban.

“Reducing usage of plastic is good for environment. But it can be done in a time-bound manner by giving enough opportunities for users to change,” said P Nataraj, chairman, Southern India Mills’ Association. “Alternatives to plastic should be adequately available,” he said.

Industry officials, however, want more clarity about the initiative. For instance, several industries including knitwear making units in Tirupur use plastic for packing. “There is no alternative to plastic used in packing as of now. It is not clear whether this plastic is exempted,” a senior industry official said. “If plastics used in packing are banned, the industry will come to a standstill,” he said.

Companies must conduct competitions among the children of their employees for creating awareness about the ban, the green watchdog said. They should carry out awareness programme among employees and other public within 10km radius about the ban and the alternatives for banned plastics, utilising the services of proactive NGO’s, NGC and ECO clubs, TNPCB said.

Download The Times of India for Latest .

- Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings with our FREE daily email newsletter.