The National Green Tribunal on Thursday directed the Central Pollution Control Board to submit a report on a 16-year-old's plea seeking a ban on sale of PET-bottled beverages by IRCTC, Coca Cola, Pepsico and others till they start collecting back the plastic waste generated due to their products. PET is a general-purpose thermoplastic polymer which belongs to the polyester family of polymers. PET bottles form 10 per cent of total plastic waste created in India.
It has been alleged that plastic waste is being generated by way of PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) bottles and this is adversely affecting the health of people and the environment.
A bench headed by tribunal Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel asked the apex pollution monitoring body to submit an action taken report on the plea.
"Let the CPCB furnish a factual and action taken report in the matter before the next date by e-mail," the bench said and posted the matter for hearing on April 20.
The National Green Tribunal (NGT) was hearing a plea filed by Aditya Dubey seeking directions to the companies, including Patanjali Peya Pvt Ltd, to stop selling drinking water and other beverages in PET bottles till they formulate and implement a scheme for complete collection of plastic waste produced by them in the course of their business.
The scheme is to be formed under Rule 9 of the Plastic Waste Management Rules.
Rule 9 states that producers, within a period of six months from the date of publication of these rules, "shall work out modalities for waste collection system on extended producers responsibility and involving state urban development departments, either individually or collectively, through their own distribution channel or through the local body concerned".
The petition said, "The respondent companies are producing 9,49,000 tonnes of PET bottles every year but have not made any proper, effective and complete arrangement for the management of plastic waste created due to their activities as required under Rule 9 of the Plastic Waste Management Rules which leads to plastic pollution".
PET bottles produced by these companies are used and thrown as garbage by consumers and the same ends up at land fill sites, leading to burden on the earth and damaging the environment due to non-biodegradability of products, it said.
"Direct the respondents to stop using PET bottles to pack water and other beverages produced by them, till they formulate and implement a scheme as required under Rule 9 to collect and dispose the plastic waste created by them," the petition said.
Rule 9 says that the primary responsibility for collection of used multi-layered plastic sachet or pouches or packaging is of producers, importers and brand owners, who introduce the products in the market.
"They need to establish a system for collecting back the plastic waste generated due to their products," the Rule states.
It also says that the manufacture and use of non-recyclable multi-layered plastic, if any, should be phased out in two years time.