Give us plastic. We shall give you freebies in return — that's the eco-friendly funda driving the municipal corporations of Delhi and Bhubaneswar!
The South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) and Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) recently introduced innovative schemes to tackle plastic waste generation by using it as currency and implementing barter systems.
There are steps in place to ensure that the collected plastic waste will be responsibly recycled in local recycling centres.
Here’s a look at them!
‘One-stop destination for – Reducing, Recycling and Reusing’
This was the colourful banner that greeted hordes of citizens walking into the Community Hall at South Delhi’s Tagore Garden on December 13.
People donated hundreds of kilos of various plastic items like bags and bottles, and in exchange, received other items
For instance, the ones who gave wet waste got manure in return. Cloth and jute bags were given to those who donated one and three kilos of plastic, respectively.
Taking forward the fight against recyclable dry waste, the SDMC also launched a truck called ‘Eco Hub on Wheels.’ The truck will move around in all areas under the SDMC jurisdiction and collect plastic and other dry items like paper, cardboard, steel, glass, etc.
“In a bid to keep the SDMC area plastic-free, we have flagged-off this unique truck called ‘Eco Hub on Wheels….SDMC will give 20 per cent discounted food coupons or T-shirts/Sweater in exchange of 5 kg of dry waste which includes papers, cardboard, plastic items, old steel items, glass bottles, aluminium cans etc.,” said Gyanesh Bharti, Commissioner SDMC, to the Millenium Post.
The distribution of eco-friendly bags like cloth and jute in exchange for one or more kilos of plastic will also be included in the collection truck.
In addition to the plastic-free efforts, the SDMC will also allow people to donate their old clothes, which will then be distributed to the needy.
In Bhubaneswar Get Food In Exchange for Plastic
In a similar drive, the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) has also kickstarted its mission to protect the environment from plastic pollution.
Residents of Odisha’s capital city, will now be able to get free access to a meal at any of the eleven state-run Ahar Centres upon depositing half a kilogram of plastic waste.
The BMC has launched the ‘Meal for Plastic’ scheme in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
“The scheme is an effective collection mechanism that lets the needy eat for free while ensuring a safe environment, and has been implemented on permanent basis. The scheme serves the dual purpose of food security and responsibly recycling plastic,” said Prem Chandra Chaudhary, the BMC Commissioner, to The Better India.
A majority of rag pickers in India function in the informal sector of waste management. They often go around the city collecting plastic and other dry waste with a hope to earn money. However, there is no guarantee of a decent earning from the waste.
In that backdrop, initiatives like food coupons and free meals can be a huge relief to them that promises a substantial return.
Bartering useful items for plastic is not a very new phenomenon in India. Several non-profit organisations and government departments have introduced innovative schemes to eradicate plastic systematically.
Featured Image Source: Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation/Twitter
Also Read: Here Are Five Initiatives That Show Plastic Barter Is Booming In India
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)