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Making small choices for a plastic-free life

Apr 22, 2018

Students at a Noida based management institution have successfully weaned off from consuming products that come in plastic packaging.

New Delhi: In their efforts towards making India a plastic free nation, students at the Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), Noida, are taking unique yet simple steps for a plastic-free life.

Taking up the challenge to go absolutely plastic-free inside and outside the campus life, students at ISDM eventually weaned off from consuming products that come in plastic packaging. Setting World Earth day as the first milestone to make their lifestyle plastic free, six months back these students started taking courageous moves.

They also convinced the faculty members, administration staff, family and friends to join the plastic free drive. From avoiding use of single-use-plastics on the move such as straws or tumbler + lids, stirrers to mix coffee, Styrofoam plates for snacks to giving up on plastic water bottles, these future leaders and managers of change are encouraging young people to turn their passion for the environment into action with small lifestyle choices.

Students have also stopped ordering food as it comes in plastic packaging. Another inspiring move comes from a group of female students who stopped using cosmetics with plastic packaging. They are now going for cosmetics with glass or recyclable packaging.

Ravali Pidaparthi, Student of PGP in Development Leadership, believes that small steps could have a great impact on our environment. “Realising the brutal role of plastic in climate change and destruction of natural resources, six months back we decided to take baby steps in our day to day life to get rid of plastic. We developed the habit of carrying our water bottle from home, started eating out rather than ordering food, carrying bag packs and some cloth bags whenever we go to the supermarket, cutting down red meat as carbon footprint is far bigger and a lot more to save mother earth. I can proudly say that today we are least depended on plastic and have made ourselves comfortable without it.”

Another student at ISDM, Nitisha Pandey, has incorporated a plastic free lifestyle in her daily routine. “All of the single-use-plastic end up in the ocean, harming, choking and killing our friends underwater and destroy nature’s wealth on land. I always make sure to take a reusable bottle whenever I go out and refilling at different possible places. I have stopped asking for straw for at McDonald's or having mocktails at restaurants or juices on the roadside. I carry a steel spoon and fork in my bag at all times so that even for street food I don't have to eat with plastic spoons. Not to purchase food that comes in plastic is a good idea to lower down its usage. All of this sounds difficult when you're on your own or are travelling, but not impossible.”

Dr Aruna Pandey, faculty at ISDM, said that Delhi produces 10,000 tonnes of garbage every day. “A large portion of this garbage is plastics and non-recyclable material that end up in Delhi’s overflowing landfills. The National Green Tribunal imposed a ban on disposable plastic glasses in 2017. Disposable cutlery, plastic packaging, and plastic bags continue to add to the ever-expanding garbage dumps of Delhi. With no way to handle the scale of plastic waste produced in Delhi, civil society action has the potential to play a crucial role towards making our city safe and healthy,” she said.

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