UN says world choking on plastic as environmental crisis grows

A sweeping look over Taimur Nagar underlines the challenges the country faces with its waste

"The scourge of plastic has reached every corner of the Earth", Erik Solheim, head of UN Environment, wrote in the report, compiled with the Indian government and launched along with a slogan: "If you can't reuse it, refuse it".

The campaign, which will continue until June 8, is titled Beat Plastic Pollution and is part of the world on Environment Day events.

The 2018 celebration, was themed: "Beat Plastic Pollution, Reduce, Re-use, Recycle".

Up to five trillion plastic bags are used each year, and 13 million tonnes of plastic leaks into the oceans annually.

"On the occasion of the World Environment Day, we declare a national campaign involving the official authorities, civil society organizations and categories of the people", he announced.

The association said levies and taxes should be imposed on producers and consumers of single-use plastics such as plastic shopping bags.

"We solicit for your collaboration and support in educating and informing our people on the giant strides this administration is doing in the Environment sector".

Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage said the commitment is a significant step towards helping end plastic pollution.

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United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres underlined that plastic pollution must be dealt globally as microplastic particles in the ocean have increased tremendously.

The Minister also led a Walk in Abuja to sensitise Nigerians on the negative impact of indiscriminate disposal of waste plastics in the country.

"An average 13 million tonnes of plastic waste enter the water system around the world annually, resulting in pollution from drainages, rivers and seas and causing floods".

Most plastics, according to United National Environment Programme, are made from fossil fuels like crude oil, which contributes to climate change and estimates for the time it takes plastics to break down range from 450 years to never.

We all are on the cutting edge of a global plastic calamity.

By 2050, it is estimated that there will be more plastic than fish in the oceans.

Consultant with the IISc, Mr Mahesh Kashyap strongly recommends that e-commerce companies should stop excessive use of plastic for packaging. I also invite Canadians to share their ideas on how we can move Canada toward zero plastic waste.

Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan had also urged people to give up single-use plastic while asserting that the fight against plastic menace did not require big actions, but only minor behavioural changes and adopting "Green Good Behaviour".

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