We have an abundance of plastic bags in UAE, they are ubiquitously found everywhere. In fact, there is probably a gigantic plastic bag in every household where the family stores additional smaller plastic bags which they get from the super markets.
UAE is a rich country, so the production of plastic bags is a convenience that they can mindlessly afford. But the scenario is not the same in India.
My visit to India, this year, has been very mind-opening. While there is a surplus amount of garbage on the roads of my country, the amount of plastic bags produced has been reduced substantially. Maybe a decade or two ago, you would find green plastic bags with every street vendor, but now these plastic bags have been replaced by jute bags.
Most supermarkets in India have also started charging a few extra rupees for plastic bags, making it an obligation for customers to try and carry their own cloth or jute bags from their houses. And those green ‘plastic monsters’ that used to litter my country, have seemingly vanished from their former home with all the street hawkers.
I think this initiative that India has taken is absolutely amazing and I feel that Dubai can do the same. Charging the customers an extra dirham for the plastic bags that most take for granted will make them think twice before carelessly picking one up from the counter.
Through these small steps, we can make UAE an ever more eco-friendly country. It is time to turn a new leaf, and this leaf might just be the greenest UAE has ever seen.