Time to adapt totally ‘green’ media in rhythm of single-use plastics ban

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With the ban on single-use plastics, we as a country have started moving towards sustainable future. In this context, now is the right time for the signage industry too to take part in the move. What we can do is to play our part, making the industry PVC free and looking for sustainable alternative printing media. After all, in the digital large-format printing business, switching to changes towards using ‘green’ materials and technologies is essential to run healthy business in safe work place.

The hazardous plastic crisis is perhaps one of the greatest challenges we all are facing today, with plastic pollution on pace at global level is going to be double by 2030. In this, there are several ways with which we in the signage industry can help to curb the environmental menace. One strategic way is switching to non-hazardous and more recyclable PVC-free printing materials.

A small step taken towards the effort of using PVC-free media in production of signage graphics will go a long way in building a sustainable future. Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change of the Government of India has announced the ban of single-use plastic items, carrying forward the spirit of ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsava’, a defining step to curb environment pollution caused by unmanaged plastic wastes.

The adverse impacts of single-use plastics on both terrestrial and aquatic eco-systems are globally recognised. In the 4th UN Environment Assembly in 2019, India had piloted a resolution on addressing single-use plastics pollution, recognising the urgent need for the global community to focus on this very serious issue. In the signage industry, health hazardous PVC media are most widely used because these materials are cheap and readily available.

Why do we go for alternatives to PVC media? Statistically, PVC material is the most environmentally damaging plastic which is dubbed as ‘poison plastic’ by the Greenpeace for the fact that it is non-recyclable, non-biodegradable and contains massive amount of chlorine and dioxin. So, let’s go for PVC-free media. The success for us to go for the sustainable printing media will only be possible through effective engagement and concerted actions by all stakeholders and our united participation in the move.

In this issue, we go North-East India for the Region Exclusive coverage. Our focused region is Kohima, a scenic capital city of Nagaland. Every single signage player whom we interacted in the city engages in diverse activities of signage and graphic arts, and most of them are youngsters with full of energy, ideas and creativity.

Sonal Khurana
sonal@smediagroup.in