But there has been very little change in the attitudes of people. Although some shopping malls do promote awareness to change the attitude of people, plastic bags continue to be used extensively. During a recent visit to India, I happened to see some of the shopping malls charging customers for plastic carry bags in an attempt to reduce its use.
Alternatively, they offer reusable jute bags for a nominal price. The reality is that despite continuous awareness initiatives and campaigns, the production of plastic has not been reduced. It is quite disappointing that plastic products once used eventually end up in landfills and have adverse effects on the environment. Its usage needs extensive control and only with improved awareness can this be achieved.
As plastic in multiple forms has become very much part of everyday life, school-going children are the worst affected by its extensive usage. Most children carry their meals in plastic containers, though some of them are marked ‘reusable’ or ‘microwaveable’, the dangers are still hiding in them because of the poor quality of raw materials.
The ideal place to start with is the early learning centres, so that it influences the young minds. The community must be held responsible to make this happen. At any cost, we must try to reduce the usage of plastic products.