India’s Plastic Waste Recycling Targets

The Union environment ministry has released a draft notification to regulate the extended producer responsibility (EPR) under the “Plastic Waste Management Rules 2016”.

Key facts

  • The draft provides that, quantity of waste will have to be managed by producers, brand owners and importers, who are generate plastic packaging waste across India.
  • When the draft notification will be passed, it will come into effect immediately.

Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR)

EPR means the responsibility of producer for environmentally sound management of product and plastic packaging till the end of its life. People & stakeholders can submit objections or suggestions on draft within 60 days, to the environment ministry.

Three categories of Plastic Packaging

EPR covers following categories of plastic packaging:

  1. Rigid Plastic Packaging
  2. Flexible Plastic Packaging of single layer or multilayer (greater than one layer with several types of plastic)
  3. Plastic sheets, carry bags (including those made up of compostable plastics) & plastic sachet or pouches
  4. Multi-layered plastic packaging.

Other provisions of the draft

  • Draft notes that, in 2021-22, producers of plastic packaging waste are required to manage 35% of the ‘Q1’ waste in metric tons.
  • EPR target of the producers will increase to 70% in 2022-23 while it will be 100%, 2023-24 onwards.
  • Similar EPR targets will be applicable for importers and brand owners but the quantity would be different on the basis of quantity of packaging waste which they are responsible for.

Brand owners EPR target

For brand owners, EPR target in 2021-22 will be average weight of fresh plastic packaging material which have been purchased and introduced in market in last two years plus average quantity of pre-consumer plastic packaging for the same period.

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