After banning plastic bags, straws and cutlery, Maharashtra is set to ban another tiny evil—and this is something that you think you have thrown out of your house but is in fact, a recurring visitor.
By the end of April 2018, the use of microplastics or plastic microbeads will be banned in Maharashtra.
Microplastics are found in your face wash, soaps, lipsticks, toothpaste and detergents. These tiny plastic particles can enter where you definitely don’t want them—your food!
Even after the dumped cosmetics go through wastewater treatment systems, the microplastics get through. These end up in the sea and are consumed by fish.
We all know how the food chain works, so these microplastics get transferred to bigger fish, and there is a genuine possibility that they might end up on your plate in the form of fish curry or fried fish!
Government officials have stated that by the end of the month, a notification will be sent out to officialise the ban of microplastics.
Satish Gavai, additional chief secretary, state environment department, told the Hindustan Times,
“Microbeads are substitutes for natural abrasives and are mainly found in cosmetics and washing powders, which are even more harmful than plastic bags for the environment.
Studies have confirmed they are a major source of cancer. These microplastics or toxic, coated beads are further consumed by fish and other marine life, which are ultimately consumed by humans.”
Maharashtra will be the first state in India to impose this ban, that is already in place in countries across the world.
The government is set to rope in the state pollution control board to inform and impose the ban on corporate firms and industries that produce these microplastics.
Our marine life is already under a severe threat from human-induced pollution, and a ban on microbeads might eliminate one form of danger.
The Maharashtra government deserves to be praised for taking an important step towards reducing the threat of plastics and protecting marine life.
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)