Jul 1, 2022 - World

India bans 19 single-use plastic products, including cups and straws

A woman uses plastic bags to carry vegetables at a local market in Chennai, India on July 1, 2022. Photo: ARUN SANKAR/AFP via Getty Images

India has imposed a ban on several single-use plastic products, including cups and straws, in an effort to help reduce pollution, Al Jazeera reports.

Driving the news: The ban makes it illegal to produce, import, stock, distribute or sell 19 plastic items that are likely to become litter, per NPR.

  • This includes plastic straws, cups, cutlery, ice cream sticks and cigarette packets, according to Al Jazeera. Some disposable plastic bags will also be replaced with thicker ones that can be reused.
  • While other plastic products are not covered by the ban, manufacturers will eventually be responsible for recycling or disposing of them, per NPR.

The big picture: Most of the world's plastic is not recycled. According to the United Nations Environment Programme, less than 10% of the 7 billion tons of plastic waste that the world has produced thus far has been recycled.

  • Single-use plastics, which are meant to be used once and thrown away, are a major contributor to plastic waste.

Within the United States, individual states and agencies have also made efforts to reduce single-use plastic.

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