National

Kohima shopkeepers sensitized on ill-effects of plastic

DIMAPUR | Publish Date: 1/14/2019 10:55:42 AM IST

The Coming Generation (TCG), a non-profit organization under the project “Nagaland for Change” an initiative of ‘Nagaland Says No to Plastic” Kohima, organized a plastic free sensitization program for shopkeepers around Kohima town from January 7 to 11. 

Its members took their message to various locations, including BOC, High School and Main town, to create awareness on the ill effects of plastics.

A press release from The Coming Generation stated that during the campaign the team also emphasized on the alternatives to plastic -- newspaper bags, cloth bags and crafted paper bags.

The release added that the reasons why plastic is so popular is because they are light weight, resistance to degradation (by chemicals, sunlight, and bacteria), durable and has a low cost. While these conveniences benefit individual users, the problems and the cost of disposal of plastic items burdens the entire society, it added.

After entry into the environment, plastics take anywhere from 15 to 1000 years to biodegrade. It poses risks to human health and the environment. In addition to problems like choking drains, plastic bag litter is a breeding ground for mosquitoes when rain water collects in them. This could worsen the situation of malaria in a highly endemic area.

Packing for hot edible items in plastics causes migration of harmful chemicals into food items, which also causes diabetes and diseases of the heart and liver.  Citing these reasons, the release said that it was high time society switches over to alternative materials in packing and transportation. 

TGC, during it awareness drive, found that 90 percent of shoppers use plastic bags. The use of alternative bags or reusing old bags was poor among a majority of the participants. Awareness generation on these strategies and effective implementation of legislation may help in reducing the usage of plastic bags in the community, it added.

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