Compliance Requirements for Single-Use Plastic Guidelines

 Company must adhere to the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016, as amended, which provide the statutory framework for the enforcement of the rules.

  1. The Company must comply with the ban on identified single-use plastic items listed below, effective from 1st July 2022:

   – Earbuds with plastic sticks, plastic sticks for balloons, plastic flags, candy sticks, ice-cream sticks, and polystyrene [Thermocol] for decoration.

   – Plates, cups, glasses, cutlery such as forks, spoons, knives, straw, trays, wrapping or packaging films around sweet boxes, invitation cards, and cigarette packets, plastic, or PVC banners less than 100 microns, stirrers.

As per Plastic Waste Management Amendment Rules, 2021, Single-use plastic item “is a plastic commodity intended to be used once for the same purpose before being disposed of or recycled”.

  1. Company must not engage in the manufacture, import, stocking, distribution, sale, or use of plastic carry bags with a thickness less than seventy-five microns, effective from 30th September 2021. Furthermore, plastic carry bags with a thickness less than one hundred and twenty microns are prohibited from 31st December 2022.
  2. The Company should support the implementation of the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016, and the ban on identified single-use plastic items by:

   – Participating in the Special Task Force formed by the state/union territory under the Chief Secretary/Administrator’s chairpersonship for effective plastic waste management.

   – Collaborating with the National Level Taskforce constituted by the Ministry for coordinated efforts towards eliminating single-use plastic items.

   – Developing a comprehensive action plan and implementing it within a specified timeline for the elimination of single-use plastic, as requested by state/union territory governments and relevant central ministries/departments.

  1. The Company should comply with the directions issued under Section 5 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986, which include:

   – Refraining from supplying plastic raw material for the manufacture of banned single-use plastic items.

   – Revoking or modifying consent/registration issued to banned single-use plastic item producers by the State Pollution Control Boards/Pollution Control Committees.

   – Ensuring the necessary action is taken by the State Urban Development Department for the implementation of the single-use plastic ban.

   – Prohibiting the import of banned single-use plastic items, as instructed by customs authorities.

  1. The Company must actively monitor compliance with the ban on identified single-use plastic items and plastic waste management through online platforms, including the National Dashboard for monitoring comprehensive action plan implementation, the CPCB Monitoring Module for Compliance on Elimination of Single Use Plastic, and the CPCB Grievance Redressal App.
  2. Company should actively participate in enforcement campaigns and regular drives undertaken by the central and state pollution control authorities to implement the ban on identified single-use plastic items.
  3. Company is encouraged to transition away from single-use plastic items and adopt eco-alternatives. Assistance and provisions are available through the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises’ ongoing schemes to support MSME enterprises in this transition. Participation in awareness-raising events and capacity-building programs related to alternatives to single-use plastics is also recommended.
  4. Non-compliance with the ban on identified single-use plastic items may result in penalties and seizure of banned materials. The Company should ensure strict adherence to the ban and take necessary measures to avoid deviations.
  5. Producers, importers, and brand owners engaged in the production, import, or use of banned single-use plastic items will not be granted registration on the centralized EPR (Extended Producer Responsibility) portal for plastic packaging. The Company should refrain from any involvement in the production, import, or use of such items to avoid penalties and registration denials.

 What is not to be used?

As per amendment PWM Rules notified by MoEF&CC in August 2021 following Single use items are restricted.

  • polystyrene [Thermocol] for decoration
  • packing films around sweet boxes, invitation cards, and cigarette packets, ear buds with plastic sticks, plastic sticks for balloons, plastic flags, candy sticks,
  • ice-cream sticks
  • plates, cups, glasses, cutlery such as forks, spoons, knives, straw, trays, wrapping, stirrers
  • plastic or PVC banners less than 100 micron

What is to be used?

  Cotton bags: Natural cloth can replace plastic bags. Sustainable clothing made from organic cotton, wool, hemp, or bamboo won’t shed plastic fibres when washed.

Bamboo: This fast-growing renewable resource can replace plastic in items like tableware and drinking straws. It is lightweight, durable, and compostable.

Wooden items: A renewable resource, wood from sustainably managed forests can replace plastic in household items like cleaning brushes, kitchen utensils, and cutting boards.

  Pottery and Other Ceramics: pottery and other fired ceramics offer a stable, waterproof alternative that’s good for food storage and tableware. Look for non-toxic glazes.

Compostable Plastics: “compostable plastics” mean plastic that undergoes degradation by biological processes during composting to yield CO2, water, inorganic compounds, and biomass at a rate consistent with other known compostable materials, excluding conventional Petro-based plastics, and does not leave visible, distinguishable, or toxic residue.

The CPCB has published what can be used and not used.

 Whether any registration is required by Company?

 The extended Producers Responsibility (EPR) regime is under implementation in Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016, according to which it is the responsibility of Producers, Importers, and Brand-owners to ensure the processing of their plastic packaging waste through recycling, re-use, or end of life disposal (such asco-processing/Waste-to-energy/Plasticto-oil/roadmaking/industrial-composting).

In order to streamline the implementation process of EPR, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India, in its fourth Amendment to the Plastic Waste Management Rules, dated February 16, 2022, notified ‘Guidelines on Extended Producer Responsibility for Plastic Packaging’ in the Schedule II of the Rules. As per these guidelines, Producers, Importers and Brand Owners (PIBOs) shall have to register through the online centralized portal developed by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

PWPs shall also have to register with the concerned SPCB/PCC in accordance with the provisions of the Section 13(3) of the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016 on this centralized portal developed by CPCB. The EPR Portal for Plastic Packaging provides provision for the registration of PIBOs/ PWPS in accordance with the notified EPR Guidelines. The portal will help in improving accountability, traceability, and transparency of fulfilment of EPR Obligations.


Extended Producer Responsibility – Plastic packaging categories covered under EPR.

Categories of Plastic – According to Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016, there are 7 categories of plastics on the basis of its recyclability:

Each plastic packaging and multi-layered packaging shall have the following information printed in English namely:

  1. Name, registration number of the manufacturer, Producer or Brand Owner and thickness in case of carry bag and plastic packaging used by the brand owner;
  2. Name and registration number of the manufacturer in case of multi-layered packaging, excluding MLP packaging used for imported goods; and
  3. Name and certificate number of producer [Rule 4(h)] in case of carry bags made from compostable plastic.

In order to stop littering due to light weight plastic carry bags, with effect from 30th September 2021, the thickness of plastic carry bags has been increased from fifty microns to seventy-five microns and to one hundred and twenty microns with effect from the 31st of December 2022. This will also allow reuse of plastic carry due to increase in thickness.

Penalty on use (and littering) of banned SUP items

  1. Spot fine on waste generators Rs.500/-
  2. Spot fine on institutional waste generators Rs.5000/-

Fine imposed by:

1) The State Pollution Control Board and Pollution Control Committee impose a fine on the defaulter producer of Single Use Plastic.

 2) Local Bodies imposes fine on Retailer, Seller & User of Single Use Plastic.

3) Fines imposed in accordance with Guidelines for EC assessment prepared by CPCB.