Overview: Plastic Waste Management (Amendment) Rules 2021
Considering the protection of the environment is a collective responsibility of all, including an individual citizens of India as well as the business entities producing, importing, or making use of plastics directly or indirectly, the Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Changes, Govt. of India has notified amended rules for better use and management of plastic wastes, namely the Plastic Waste Management (Amendment) Rules (PWM) 2018 as notified on 12.08.2021. These amended rules provide for minimizing and prohibiting the use of single-use plastic items, which have lower utility and pose a higher risk for the environment, by the targeted year 2022.
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Applicability of PWM rules 2018
The newly introduced apply to every waste generator, Plastic manufacturer manufacturing to be used by the producer, waste processors, producers, importers, brand owners (also known as PIBOS) operating in the manufacturing/import of plastic carry bags or multi-layered packaging, for packaging or unwrapping packaged commodities.
What Does the Notification Provide?
As per the newly amended PWM Rules 2018, every person engaged in the business of generation, collection, storage, transport, re-use, re-cycle, and disposing of plastic wastes, including the PIBO, manufacturing recyclers, individuals, or agencies, or groups of individuals who are either engaged or compulsorily required to obtain registration under the PWM rules 2018, Consent to operate under the (Water Prevention & Control of Pollution )Act 1974 and Air(Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act 1981 from the Delhi Pollution Control Committee;
Apart from this, other amendments notified under Rule 4(1) of the Plastic Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2021 provide for the following-
- Plastic carry bags made of original and recycled plastic should not be smaller than (75 microns) in thickness w.e.f. 30th Sep 2021 and one hundred twenty microns (120 microns) w.e.f. 31st Dec 2021;
- Pouches using plastic materials should not be used for storage, package, or selling gutkha, tobacco, and pan masala;
- Plastic material in any form such as vinyl acetate/maleic acid/vinyl chloride copolymer shall not be applied in packing gutkha, pan masala & tobacco in all forms.
- The thickness of non-woven plastic carry bags should not be more than 60gm per square meter w.e.f. 30th Sep 2021;
Introduction of Extended Producer's Responsibility (EPR)-
To make business entities more responsible for environmental protection and safety, the Government of India has introduced the concept of Extended Producer's Responsibility (EPR) under Rule 9 of Plastic Waste Management Rules (Amendment) 2018.
As per the concept, every producer, importer, and the brand owner (PIBOs) shall be responsible for the plastic waste generated in the environment due to the products introduced by them in the market. And, every producer importer/brand owner shall be responsible for the environmentally sound management of the product till the end of its life.
In case of multi-layered plastic which is non-recyclable /non-energy recoverable or has no alternate use, should be eliminated within a period of two years.
Compulsory Registration for PIBOs
Therefore, every producer/importers/brand owner including those provided below shall be required to obtain registration with the Delhi Pollution Controlling Committee(DPCC) by accessing the website (https://dpcc.delhi.gov.nic.in.) and further comply with the PWM Rules 2018 and other rules and regulations applicable to the (Water Prevention & Control of Pollution )Act 1974 and (Air Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act 1981-
- Individuals or business entities involved in either manufacturing or import of plastic carry bags or multi-layered plastic packaging or packaging through plastic sheets or similar entities;
- Industries /individuals making use of either plastic sheets, covers or packaging or similar items or
- Industries using multi-layered packaging for packaging or wrapping the commodity recyclers and manufacturers plastic raw materials to be used by producers in the NCT of Delhi;
Consequence of Non-Compliance of Rules
Every PIBO or similar person shall be under an immediate obligation to obtain registration under the PWM Rules 2018, and those who have already obtained registration under the same shall compulsorily make an application for renewal of registration in advance to avoid any penal consequences;
Read Our Article: PWM Rules 2020 Registration for Producers Importers and Brand Owners
Further, any PIBO or any of the business entity undertaking any business activity as above-mentioned fails to comply with the PWM Rules 2018, may, in the event of non-compliance with the rules may face consequences including shutting down of the business units, disconnection electricity/water supply under the above –mentioned acts including under Environmental Protection Act 1986.
Protection of the environment and climate changes is a matter of challenge for countries like India which is going through its rapid phase of development. Therefore, the PWM (Amendment) rules 2018, provide for an additional responsibility on producers, importers, brand owners, and industries using plastics for packaging purposes to minimize its use and manage it efficiently to have a lesser bearing on the environment.
This portion of the site is for informational purposes only. The content is not legal advice. The statements and opinions are the expression of author, not corpseed, and have not been evaluated by corpseed for accuracy, completeness, or changes in the law.
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