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New Delhi : Terming plastic a serious menace, Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Dr Harsh Vardhan on February 19, 2018, emphasised that the Ministry itself must take the lead in discouraging the use of plastic.

Speaking at an event to mark the announcement of India as Global Host of World Environment Day 2018 here, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that for India, World Environment Day 2018 is “not a symbolic celebration, but a mission”.  The Minister invited the people to take care of their Green Social Responsibility and urged them to take up Green Good Deeds in everyday life.  Reiterating that Indians have learnt living in harmony with nature from their ancestors, Dr. Harsh Vardhan emphasised that for India, environmental issues are not merely technical issues, but real moral issues and a movement for the future generations, according to a PIB release.

Addressing the gathering, Erik Solheim said that plastic is a huge environmental and health issue.  The UN Executive Director noted the manner in which PM Narendra Modi and the Environment Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan have altered the nature of dialogue on environment in the country.

Speaking on the occasion, Secretary, MoEF&CC, C K Mishra pointed out that the World Environment Day celebrations this year are a commitment by the Government to the task of sustainable development.  He underlined that the effort is to hand over a much better world to the future generations. Mishra also stated that the Ministry is working on creating mass awareness about the hazards of plastic pollution. Earlier, in a green initiative, Dr Harsh Vardhan and Solheim rode in an electric car from Lodhi Estate to Indira Paryavaran Bhawan.

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