Vasco: India’s Plastic-Free Town


In an attempt to avoid the above scenes, a town in India has gone plastic-free. Vasco (shortened from Vasco de Gama), a city in Goa state on the west coast of India, has been the first council to implement the “Zero Garbage Town Scheme” following a high court judgment in late 2003. The scheme was launched on January 26 of this year; in anticipation of the difficulty that the ban would bring, many incentives have been built in to the system. Jute and paper bags have been distributed free of charge, citizens are awarded one liter of milk for free for every 100 empty milk packets returned, and 20 women living below the poverty line have been employed to help collect plastics. The ban on plastics has been strictly enforced; 20 businesses have been fined for violating the new edict. It seems most citizens in Vasco support the idea, though difficulty arises in finding suitable alternatives for things like large volume garbage bags and other supplies that have traditionally been plastic. Still, with both the government and the majority of citizens behind the idea, it seems they’re off to a great start. ::DaijiWorld via ::Hugg (site in Beta)