Natural materials to make spoons, straws to ease environmental damage | Daily News

Natural materials to make spoons, straws to ease environmental damage

Environment Minister Mahinda Amaraweera states that more than 600 million plastic spoons are dumped into the environment in our country every year.

The Minister said the environmental damage caused by the plastic spoons that are widely used in the country at present was immense.

Plastic spoons are often issued to consumers, especially for food such as yogurt and ice cream, as well as by food preparation companies. These are used only once, he added.

“Plastic drinking straws also release a similar amount into the environment. All of this has the potential to introduce alternative products”.

The minister said the Environment Ministry has taken action to ban single use disposable products made of plastic and polythene.

“All of these products are widely used products that have a strong impact on increasing environmental pollution. These include sachets, non-perishable lunch sheets, string hopper plates, plastic spoons, food containers, cotton buds with plastic hooks, garlands made of plastic and polythene, inflatable toys, plastic spoons and drinking straws and stirrings”.

Currently, the State Ministry of Cane, Brass, Clay and Wood Industries have launched such a locally made materials promotion programme.

Accordingly, a discussion was held at the Environment Ministry recently regarding the launch of a joint programme between the Environment Ministry and the Cane, Brass, Clay and Wood Industries State Ministry.

Environment Minister Mahinda Amaraweera and Cane, Brass, Clay and Wood Industries State Minister Prasanna Ranaweera were also present.

The difficulties encountered here, especially in procuring natural materials, were discussed.

As an alternative to the existing relaxation of the existing rules and regulations, replanting of cane and jute for easy access to the natural material as well as obtaining clay for the pottery industry, the Yan Oya is currently running out of clay. Attention was also drawn to the utilisation of the vast clay deposit in the valley.

It was also decided to launch a joint programme with the Environment, Wildlife and Forest Conservation Ministries to cultivate cane in the natural forest and to use flax as an elephant fence to control wild elephant poaching.

The issue of registering the respective industrialists by the National Crafts Council and releasing the required solvents to them was also discussed at this meeting.

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