Single-use plastic products threaten health and the environment in Jessore

Sources say there are around 8,000 tea stalls in Abhaynagar and around 100,000 cups of tea are sold each day, where 80% of stores use single-use plastic cups.

Public health, as well as the environment of the Abhaynagar upazila in Jessore, are at risk as single-use plastic products flood stores and clog drains.

Environmentalists blame the nonchalant attitude of the Ministry of the Environment for the gravity of the situation and demand the necessary measures to implement the January 9 directive of the High Court to stop the use of polythene bags and products single-use plastics nationwide within a year.

Sources say there are around 8,000 tea stalls in Abhaynagar and around 100,000 cups of tea are sold each day. Eighty percent of stores use single-use plastic cups.

Environmentalists say these cups are responsible for plugging drains and clogging the municipal area of ​​Nawapara.

Plastic plates and cups are popular items used on various occasions because they can simply be thrown away after use. These cups are mainly sold at the Nawapara market.

Abdur Rahman, Kalim Uddin and Anwar Hossain, owners of tea stalls at Payra Bazar in the upazila, said officers from the Bhabdah police camp broke their glasses and cups because they did not have plastic cups for single use.

This prompted them to start using plastic cups, they said, but declined to comment when asked how they dispose of single-use items.

Mangal Kumar, a plastic products trader, said there are around 20 stores in Nawapara market that sell one-off plastic items. “Every day they sell around 100,000 single-use plastic cups which cost 70 paisa to a Tk per piece,” he said.

Mr. M. Kamarul Islam, a member of the environmental group, said that plastic is as harmful to the human body as it is to the environment. Immediate and effective action must be taken to stop the use of these imperishable plastics, he said.

Dr SM Mahamudur Rahman Rizvi, head of health and family planning in Upazila, explained that these products are made from harmful chemicals called polymers, which cause unwanted reactions in the human body and pose a serious threat to the human body. the environment.

“Drinking tea or hot water in plastic cups causes severe damage to the skin, heart, kidneys and liver,” he said, adding that it was better to use cups made of clay or glass rather than plastic.

Upazila’s Deputy (Land) Commissioner, KM Rafiqul Islam, has stated that the use of plastic products made from polyethylene and polypropylene or any compound of the two constitutes a violation of the Conservation Law of 1995. environment of Bangladesh.

Anyone could face up to two years in prison or a fine of Tk 2 lakh or both for using these items, he said.

“We need to educate the general public to prevent the use of plastics. If necessary, mobile courts will be set up, ”he added.

No one from the DoE’s Jessore office was available for comment.

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