Business school MDI Gurgaon, in collaboration with Volunteer4India (platform for people to participate in CSR and other activities for social causes), has initiated a 45-day pilot project to strengthen the PET waste management and recycling ecosystem in the city. (Short for polyethylene terephthalate, PET is used to make most plastic bottles.) The campaign, MDI Gurgaon said, is aimed towards seeking the truth about the current journey of PET bottles from rack to recycle. “It is a way to raise awareness and encourage Gurgaon-based local bodies to ensure proper collection, segregation, disposal and recycling of plastic waste,” MDI said in a statement.
The initiative, which goes by the hashtag #WhereIsMyPETGoing, started on February 14, and since then 150 students have been visiting key residential areas, corporate offices, colleges, malls, shopping complexes, food courts and high probability PET consumption areas, to interview the key stakeholders (facility managers, housekeeping and administrative staff, sustainability and waste management functions) and gauge their level of awareness and practices across the collection and segregation process. For last-mile coverage, they have been talking to ragpickers, kabadiwalas and landfill contractors.
“The current rate of PET recycling in our country is 80%, and 10% get reused. Considering PET is the most recycled plastic in the world, we wanted to evaluate the existing practices of plastic waste management. The journey of PET containers from place of consumption to last-mile disposal will be tracked and evaluated,” said Aman Mishra, COO, Volunteer4India.
SK Rai, professor, MDI Gurgaon, added, “To address the problem of plastic pollution, we need to equip the next generation of entrepreneurs and innovators with abilities and instincts. PET is easily recyclable, and hence an ideal plastic type to raise awareness about recycling.”