The term "biodegradable" has been used over the past few years, to describe plastics or packaging that could potentially be metabolized by microorganisms in nature, with complete breakdown to CO2/Methane, water and biomass. However, there is significant confusion and controversy surrounding biodegradable plastics since many suppliers have used the term to loosely describe their material/packaging without specifying the conditions under which the material would degrade in nature. For instance, some plastics (like PLA) will only degrade under industrial composting conditions, while some others (like PHA) can break down under a wider range of conditions and environments (industrial, backyard, marine). Given this widespread confusion and the misuse of the "biodegradable" term, many global government and industry organizations have issued guidelines to restrict or eliminate the unqualified use of biodegradable as a descriptor of plastics or packaging. These include the European Commission guidelines (European Plastics Strategy) and the Federal Trade Commission Green Guides in the US.
In line with such guidelines, Ubuntoo's recommends that companies providing biodegradable materials, products or packaging:
1.Avoid unqualified use of the term "biodegradable" to describe their products
2.Any claim of biodegradability should be accompanied by a description of specific conditions and environments under which the material or product will undergo degradation in nature
3.It is strongly recommended that companies provide globally accepted certifications or testing for various biodegradability claims (such as the BPA certification for industrial composting)
Further in line with the position articulated by the European Commission as well as major CPG companies, Ubuntoo recommends that "biodegradable" plastics should not be considered a solution for littering (or worse a license to litter). Appropriate collection and end-of-life solutions (such as industrial composting or home composting) need to be put into place to avoid biodegradable plastics ending up as litter in the environment.
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In a country where among 210 Million lack access to improved sanitation and 163 Million are prone to water-borne diseases also where 58% of the population earns less than Rs.200/- cannot really afford to pay Rs.20/- per liter of water which may or may not be completely pure and will also add its part in plastic waste. Mr. Jatin Kumar and Mr. Dinesh Goyal came together in 2015 to form ”Pi-Lo Shudh Pani Seva Foundation” which further came up with a sustainably smart solution: Pi-Lo Smart water services.
Pi-Lo became the first mover of smart water ATM’s in Delhi-NCR. The machine took no time in getting approved by Ministry of Drinking water and Sanitation as it is based on reverse osmosis and ultraviolet purification and ensures 95% plus recovery of water and less the 5% waste is generated which is comparatively a higher percentage of purification as compared to domestic R.O. systems. These water ATMs make the most essential element to health-safe, pure and available to all for almost free of cost.
Their purpose is to make safe and pure water available to all. So, to verify the results on practical grounds for DMRC and other locations, a project was started on 30th June 2015 and continued till 17th January 2016 for a duration of six months at Botanical Garden metro station.
Impressed with their efficiency not only DMRC but also Ghaziabad Nagar Nigam, Municipal Corporation of Delhi, etc. collaborated with them. Pi-Lo also got the approval of ASI monuments to install their smart water ATM’s and serve the public. Starting at 1 they are a family of over 1000 machines (75 installed, 1000 approved and under process). Their goal doesn’t limit itself to serve water but also to create awareness related to water and the pollution plastic bottles serving it creates.
The government and the public go hand in hand to bring the change. Pi-Lo supports Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Swasth Bharat Abhiyan, Skill India, Digital India and Make in India and to keep the ball of awareness rolling Pi-Lo keeps organizing online and offline activities on both small and large scales. On 5th June 2016 i.e. World environment day Pi-Lo organized a large scale interaction event with public and destroyed a “devil figure” made of plastic bottles as a sign of destroying the villain of 21st century i.e. Plastic, which remains even after 200 years of disposal.
Since then Pi-Lo has been creating awareness on social media through every platform by spreading facts, data, and solutions related to water problems. It has been organizing small-scale events such as Nukkad Natak, Poetry, etc. performances themed on water and its problems. Promoting both solutions and culture and also motivating and guiding the youth to solve the real of problems of the world.
Humanitarian service has been very close to the heart of Jatin Kumar. After completing post graduation in engineering, he decided to work in the field of education & started an engineering institution in Bijnor to improve the education infrastructure in the small town of UP. His efforts to connect with local area villages & schools’ development received recognition from Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam the erstwhile President of India and has also been recognized by AICTE under “Unnat Bharat Abhiyan”. Post this they have taken up a major initiative to address one of the major challenges facing the humanity i.e. providing pure & safe drinking water for all. Their innovative idea of “Pi-Lo Smart Water system” from their social organization, “Pi-Lo Shudh Pani Seva” Foundation has been making giant strides to reach every Individual.