The plastics waste constitutes two major category of plastics; (i) Thermoplastics and (ii) Thermoset plastics. Thermoplastics, constitutes 80% and thermoset constitutes approximately 20% of total post-consumer plastics waste generated in India. The Thermoplastics are recyclable plastics which include; Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), Low Density Poly Ethylene (LDPE), Poly Vinyl Choloride(PVC), High Density Poly Ethylene (HDPE), Polypropylene(PP), Polystyrene (PS) etc. However, thermoset plastics contains alkyd, epoxy, ester, melamine formaldehyde, phenolic formaldehyde, silicon, urea formaldehyde, polyurethane, metalised and multilayer plastics etc.
A compositional change on the basis of income of people in low, medium and high income cities suggests that as country economically improves the organic share decreases whereas that of plastic increases. Omnipresent, toxic & ever increasing; the plastic pollution's negative impact on marine life, groundwater, land and air is ominously growing.
For instance, waste plastic generated from top three delhi railway stations and delhi airport is close to 10000 kgs/day and we know that the average period for one plastic bottle to decompose is 450 years!
It is critical that we aim for 100% recovery and recycling of plastic waste!