PDA Govt targets plastic free Nagaland by Dec 1; Open defecation free by Oct 2

PDA Govt targets plastic free  Nagaland by Dec 1; Open defecation free by Oct 2

Kohima, June 5: The Government of Nagaland has set a six months target for a plastic free Nagaland by banning use of plastic in the State. The Government has also set a target to make Nagaland free of open defecation by October 2 next.
Speaking at a programme to observe World Environment Day at NBCC Convention Hall today, Chief Minister, Neiphiu Rio said plastic has become a menace as it leads to choking of drains and gutters that causes flooding as well as a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. Burning of plastic also results in release of toxic gases, he said, adding that given the challenges plastics pose, people need to look at what all can be done to “beat the plastic”.
He said one simplest thing that can be done is to ‘stop using plastic bags’ and instead take reusable cloth bags for shopping. Stating that Kohima Municipal Corporation is implementing the Plastic Waste (Management & Handling) Rules 2011 under The Environment Protection Act, 1986, he however said that there is need to improve awareness as well as enforcement of the Act.
The CM also suggested on replacing the use of plastic plates and cutlery in functions with bamboo products which are not only environment friendly but will also give a push to the bamboo based economy.
Appealing everyone to resolve and commit for a plastic free Nagaland by banning the use of plastic in the State within six month, Rio requested the State Chief Secretary to set up a task force to achieve the goal by December 1, 2018 and have an action plan to ensure alternatives like jute bags, cloths bags, bamboo cutlery that enable a clean environment without the use of plastics.
On the Union Government’s objective to declare the country Open Defecation Free by October 2, 2019; Rio said the State Government is also working towards that objective. “We in Nagaland are also committed to making our State open defecation free and I am confident that with the support of all Nagaland will be open defection free by 2nd October 2018 – one year ahead of the National target.”
He said Swachh Bharat and Open Defecation Free campaign is not only about building toilets, but more about bringing in behavioural change.
Rio said “Clean and Green Nagaland” has been the PDA’s motto in their manifesto adding that the State Government had promised to launch a campaign for clean and green Nagaland within three months. Accordingly, he said, the Government was committed to plant trees for a green Nagaland. He added that while National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government led by the BJP is celebrating four years in office the People’ Democratic Alliance (PDA) Government has resolved to plant a minimum 48,000 saplings in a campaign mode in the next one week.
“Each of the 11 districts and Noklak will be planting a minimum of 4000saplings to ensure that the goal of 48000 saplings is reached,” Rio said. He asked community, youth and the people to join the campaign and plant more trees to make Nagaland greener. “The dream of a ‘Clean and Green Nagaland’ will be a reality only with active participation of everyone,” he added.
Minister Environment, Forest & Climate Change and Parliamentary Affairs, CM Chang, in his keynote address, said the observation of the day is a call for action to everyone to come together and combat one of the greatest environmental challenges of our time. He added that plastic has many valuable uses, and we have become over-reliant on single-use or disposable plastic and this impending epidemic is overwhelming our planet.
“The plastic that ends up in the oceans can circle the Earth four times in a single year, and plastic can persist for up to 1,000 years before it fully disintegrates. Plastic also makes its way into our water supply and plastics contain a number of chemicals, many of which are toxic or disrupt hormones,” he said.
In collaboration with Department of Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Nagaland Science & Technology Council launched a book on School Tool Kit on the World Environment Day. The kit contains a Teacher’s Hand Book, 3 Posters, booklet for students on positive Hand Print action. The kit seeks to inculcate a sense of responsibility of school going children and motivate them to reduce, reuse and recycle plastic by their individual action. The teacher manual developed, as a part of the kit, provides teachers an opportunity to meaningfully engage with students to clarify facts associated with the increasing plastic pollution 1 00 copies of the Tool Kit will be distributed to school and Nagaland Government departments.
Nagaland Legislative Assembly Speaker, Vikho-o Yhoshu Speaker administered the ‘green pledge’ while A short play discouraging the usage of plastics during shopping was also staged by artists of Dreams Unlimited.
The Chief Minister also felicitated the winners of the state level poster competition for school students below standard X. Winners of 1st, 2nd and 3rd position were Marnungba, Class IX, Town Higher Secondary School, Mokokchung, Pipito Awomi, Class X, Holy Family Higher Secondary School, Kohima; Atuna Shikhu, Class X, North Field, Kohima. Departmental Book was released by the Chief Minister followed by the inauguration of photo exhibition. All the participants were given a tree sapling to commemorate the World Environment Day. (Page News Service)