Thursday 25 April 2024

India pollutes the oceans with plastic more than all other nations

Regarding the disposal of plastic into the oceans, India has been identified as one of the leading contributors. The nation faces significant challenges in managing plastic pollution. The accompanying image was generated by artificial intelligence, drawing inspiration from a sculpture titled 'The Giant Plastic Tap' by Canadian artist Benjamin Von Wong, which was exhibited outside the Ottawa talks building.

Click on the image to see it larger - important for smartphones.

India plays a significant role to say the least in plastic pollution in our oceans. Here are some key facts:

  1. Annual Plastic Waste Dumping: In 2020, India was the worst country for plastic waste in the oceans, dumping approximately 126.5 million kg of plastic each year. To put this into perspective, that weight is equivalent to over 250 thousand bottlenose dolphins, one of the most commonly found dolphin species in the ocean.

  2. Comparison with the United States: Despite the United States producing double the amount of plastic waste annually compared to India (42 billion kg), only 2.4 million kg of it ends up in our oceans. This discrepancy could be due to the fact that the U.S. exports a significant portion of its waste to countries like India, which may have less effective waste management systems.

  3. Exporting Plastic Waste: In 2018, the United States exported 157 thousand shipping containers filled with plastic waste, equivalent to approximately 1.07 million kg of plastic. While some of this waste went to countries with good waste management systems, a substantial amount was shipped to countries like India, which struggle with plastic waste management.

  4. Collective Impact: The top five plastic waste dumpers globally contribute an astonishing 314 million kg of plastic into the ocean each year. India’s contribution remains a critical environmental challenge.

Here’s the list of the top 10 countries based on plastic waste dumped into the oceans:

  1. India: 126.5 million kg
  2. China: 70.7 million kg
  3. Indonesia: 56.3 million kg
  4. Brazil: 38 million kg
  5. Thailand: 22.8 million kg
  6. Mexico: 3.5 million kg
  7. Egypt: 2.5 million kg
  8. United States: 2.4 million kg
  9. Japan: 1.8 million kg
  10. United Kingdom: 703 thousand kg11

Efforts to address plastic pollution are crucial to safeguard marine life and ocean ecosystems. 🌊🐬

How bad is plastic pollution in India?

India faces a significant challenge when it comes to plastic pollution. Here are some key facts:

  1. Annual Plastic Waste Generation: India generates approximately 3.5 million tonnes of plastic waste each year. This staggering amount has almost doubled over the last five years, highlighting the severity of the issue.

  2. Per Capita Plastic Consumption: While the per-capita plastic consumption in India is relatively low at 13.6 kg, compared to countries like the U.S. (108 kg) and China (56 kg), the impact is still substantial. Plastic pollution adversely affects our ecosystems and is also linked to air pollution.

  3. Recycling and Collection: India collects only 60% of its plastic waste, with the remaining 40% directly entering the environment. This lack of proper collection exacerbates the problem.

  4. Single-Use Plastics: To address this issue, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced India’s pledge to phase out single-use plastics by 2022. These single-use plastics include items like straws, cutlery, earbuds, and packaging films.

  5. Recycling Challenges: Despite efforts, a large fraction of plastic waste in India still ends up in landfills or waterways, posing a significant environmental threat.

Efforts are being made through initiatives like the National Dashboard on Elimination of Single Use Plastic, Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Portal, and more to manage plastic waste effectively and create a better future.

Sources: extensive search of the internet. India Today is one source. Another is Euro News. Many more. 
P.S. please forgive the occasional typo. These articles are written at breakneck speed using Dragon Dictate. I have to prepare them in around 20 mins.

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