Environmental activist files a petition against use of polythene bags in LHC
Environmental activist and civil rights lawyer Abuzar Salman Khan Niazi has filed a petition in LHC against use of polythene bags and styrofoam products.
Environmental activist and civil rights lawyer Abuzar Salman Khan Niazi has taken to the court seeking a ban on polythene bags. Determined to put an end to this environmental hazard, Abuzer has filed a constitutional petition in LHC (Lahore High Court) seeking a ban on polythene bags and styrofoam products in Punjab.
The petitioner maintains that will being an environmental challenge, they are also threat to the fundamental right to life protected by Article 9 of the constitution. Challenging the law through a public interest petition, Niazi said that due to the hazardous implications on human health, an effective ban needs to be imposed on polythene as it violates rights to life and dignity guaranteed under articles 9 & 14 respectively.
Considering the health impacts, Niazi asked for a complete ban on polythene and Styrofoam products (plastic straws, cups, spoons, plates, food trays and other disposable material).
What challenges does the use of polythene bags pose:
Polythene, Styrofoam and single-use plastics take thousands of years to decompose. Due to this very reason, they have been polluting our sewerage and spreading epidemics, polluting soil, causing water pollution and endangering aquatic life for years.
The petitioner additionally said that 15 microns thickness plastic bags are an environmental disaster. He said that even in the most under-developed countries, minimum thickness alternatively allowed is 50 microns – which is far less hazardous and threatening.
https://t.co/HkYzuXy6V2. I hav filed a Constitutional Petition in LHC seeking ban on Polythene Bags & Styrofoam Products in Punjab on the ground dat they are threat to fundamental right to life protected by Article 9 of Constitution. Let's bring an end to this Environment Hazard
— Abuzar Salman Khan Niazi (@SalmanKNiazi1) May 16, 2019
The petitioner requested the court to consider the case and direct the provincial government and enact a new law completely banning the manufacturing, use, sale, storage, import and marketing of polythene bags and Styrofoam products, in particular, single-use plastics.
Need for action:
Polythene bags tend to disrupt the environment in a concerning way. They get in the soil and consequently damage the releases slow chemicals. They break down in the soil and animals consume it in some form or other, leading to health consequences.
Besides the impact on aquatic life, the use of polythene bags can also block sewer pipes and starve the local wetlands, creeks and streams which can lead to massive die-offs.
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