Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport to be plastic-free by 2019

The country’s busiest airport in Delhi, the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA), will go plastic-free by 2019. The airport has already started saying no to plastic for grocery bags, food packaging, bottles, straws, containers, cups and cutlery.

Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) has said the initiative is in line with India’s pledge to eliminate all single-use plastic in the country by 2022. DIAL has started awareness campaigns, enhancing waste management systems and promoting the use of eco-friendly sustainable alternatives progressively.

Single-use plastics, often also referred to as disposable plastics, are commonly used in packaging and include items intended to be used only once before they are thrown away or recycled. DIAL plans to ensure use of smart and bio-friendly packaging for food takeaways and beverages, use of paper or environmental friendly bags for retail shopping and engage key stakeholder groups, raise awareness, enforce, monitor and adjust the chosen measure.

“DIAL is an environmentally responsible organisation. Over the years, it has taken many initiatives towards environment protection and sustainable development. Our objective is to make the Delhi airport free of single-use plastic, in line with the PM’s vision. This would be another significant step towards achieving environmental sustainability at IGIA,” Videh Jaipuriar, CEO, DIAL, said.

The Bengaluru International Airport Ltd (BIAL), operators of Kempegowda International Airport, also said eliminating the use of plastic is just one among their many sustainable initiatives.

“At Bengaluru airport, all the four lounges, food outlets and a day hotel have taken stringent measures to reduce dependency on plastics. As a first step, the use of straws, coffee stirrers, plastic knifes, spoons, forks and polythene bags have been stopped. However, there are some plastic components that are still being used by our concessionaires that include bottled water, food wrappers, cheese and butter wraps and packaged snacks. These are beyond our control as these come directly from the manufacturer. Plans are afoot to further reduce the dependency on plastics,” a spokesperson for BIAL said.

An AAI official also confirmed that airports have been asked to do away with plastic, reported Hindustan Times.