Extended Producer Responsibility Law in India.

Extended Producer Responsibility Law in India.

Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change has come out with Uniform Framework for Extended Producers Responsibility on 26th June 2020 and is open for public comment upto 31st July 2020.

India generates approximately 25,000 to 30,000 tonnes of plastic waste every day. Approximately 10,556 tonnes of this waste remains uncollected and thus reaches landfills or is thrown on the streets.

Govt. has notified Plastic Waste Management Rule 2016 on 18th March, 2016 which has made Producers, Manufacturers, and Brand Owners responsible for collecting back the plastic waste generated due to their products under ‘Extended Producers Responsibility‘ (EPR).

The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has told the National Green Tribunal that e-commerce giants Amazon and Flipkart need to fulfill their extended producer responsibility under the Plastic Waste Management Rules.

  • According to the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016 “Primary responsibility for collection of used multi-layered plastic sachet or pouches or packaging is of producers, importers and brand owners who introduce the products in the market”.
  • According to the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016 “Primary responsibility for collection of used multi-layered plastic sachet or pouches or packaging is of producers, importers and brand owners who introduce the products in the market”.
  • EPR is a policy approach under which producers are given a significant responsibility – financial and/or physical – for the treatment or disposal of post-consumer products.
  • Assigning such responsibility could in principle provide incentives to prevent wastes at the source, promote product design for the environment and support the achievement of public recycling and materials management goals.

Benefit with EPR Law

  • EPR causes producers to change packaging design and selection, leading to increased recyclability and/or less packaging use.
  • EPR provides additional funds for recycling programs, resulting in higher recycling rates.
  • EPR improves recycling program efficiency, leading to less cost, which provides a benefit to society.
  • EPR results in a fairer system of waste management in which individual consumers pay the cost of their own consumption, rather than general taxpayers.

Conclusion

Hence, the guiding principles in the proposed EPR framework aims to achieve increased collection and recycling rates while creating a roadmap for cost-efficiency, value chain optimization, and a transparent and well-functioning waste management ecosystem. And, if implemented well, EPR can be a strong guiding path towards transitioning to a circular economy.

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