This inspiring news comes to us from Noida, India.
Whether it is a wedding, a house party, a community meet or any other occasion where people gather, food is a common denominator. And this food gets served in plastic plates, bowls, and spoons. Needless to say, these plastic items are overwhelmingly single-use and pose a problem to the waste management systems the city has in place. In Noida, some residents have started the novel idea of crockery banks in a bid to cut down on excessive use of plastic crockery.
These crockery banks are started by regular people like you and me. The crockery bank owners have bought steel plates, serving bowls and spoons in bulk and they let people borrow the crockery with the caveat that after use, the crockery has to be cleaned before being returned. They do not charge any money for leasing out the crockery and are completely free.
Savita Bhatia is a resident of Sector 15 A in Noida and she started by buying 50 units of steel cutlery for a princely sum of Rs. 20000. She started renting them out in her locality and spread the word about her services for free. She says that she has educated people in nearby areas about the ills of plastic cutlery and now a lot of people in her sector use her steel cutlery for events and functions.
Dr. Supriya Mahajan Sardana stays in Arun Vihar in Sector 37 and her project is known as Back to Steel which she started a few months ago. She has stocked up on 150 units of steel utensils. The 43-year old says, ” Crockery or utensil banks are one of the much-needed solutions for our exponentially growing mountains of single-use disposable trash generated in tons every single day. This bank is an “Ask-use-wash-return” service with no charges.”
Madhu Mittal, living in ATS Greens in Sector 50 has over 800 pieces of steel cutlery. She gives it on rent without any charges to people who ask for it across the city. Her initiative is called Jan Jagran Sangathan which she started with only 50 units of cutlery three years ago. That initiative has expanded today.
Colonel Gajraj Singh lives in Sector 50, Antriksh Greens in Noida and he decided to donate a set of utensils to the community center of his society. He was struck by the initiative “Back to steel” and now he says that the community meals in his society have become zero-plastic events.
These inspiring initiatives by residents of Noida have the potential of reducing the plastic waste burden. Let us hear it for these intrepid warriors.
Image source: Times of India