Reliance Industries among top 10 plastic polluters worldwide, survey says
Mukesh Ambani (Photo: BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images).
INDIA’S Reliance Industries is among the top 10 plastic polluters worldwide, a survey has shown.
Reliance Industries, whose head is Mukesh Ambani, and Indorama, run by Asian businessman SP Lohia, have been included in a list of 20 global companies that contribute the most to single-use plastic waste.
Researchers looked at some 1,000 factories making raw materials for single-use products and found that 20 companies were behind more than half of all the single-use plastic items thrown away globally.
Single-use plastic waste mostly includes bottles, food packages and bags that often end up polluting the oceans.
US-based natural gas company ExxonMobil topped the list.
Indorama Ventures is a petro-chemical and textile giant headquartered in Bangkok. However, the company has shown its commitment towards better management of single-use plastic waste, as it has developed a sustainable rPET/rPET blend flake, pellet, fibre and filament under the brand name Deja™.
“Working throughout the supply chain, Deja offers sustainability by giving converters credibility, retailers accreditation, and end consumers the assurance of transparency and high performance as standard. Deja demands more from our PET and less from the environment by recycling and transforming PET into extraordinary, sustainable products across multiple applications that perform as they protect the future,” K Agarwal, CEO of Indorama Ventures, told TextileWorld.
Besides, the company is working with scientists at Polymateria Ltd to commercially harness “biotransformation” technology. This patented technology can alter the properties of polyolefins so that they become biodegradable in a natural process.
Unveiled earlier this week, the plastics study noted that the ongoing Covid crisis is also responsible for increase in demand for plastic for making masks and other medical equipment.
It tracked the flow of plastic through the supply chain and found that polymers, the basic ingredient for making single-use items, are mostly produced by processing fossil fuels including oil, gas and coal.
“It’s an extraordinary point of leverage for regulators, for finance institutions, to influence them in order that rather than producing from fossil fuels, they produce plastic that’s recycled,” said Australia’s Minderoo Foundation director of finance and transparency, Dominic Charles.
He emphasised the need to create plastics from recycled material rather than from fossil fuels.
The report stated that plastic production is likely to expand by 30 per cent in the next five years, increasing carbon emissions as well as creating more plastic waste.
Meanwhile, ExxonMobil said it was taking steps for better waste management by “increasing plastic recyclability, supporting improvements in plastic waste recovery – for example, through our founding membership in the Alliance to End Plastic Waste – and minimising plastic pellet loss from our operations”.
Headquartered in Mumbai, India, Reliance Industries is engaged in energy, petrochemicals, textiles, natural resources, retail, and telecommunication businesses.
The company is the top producer of petrochemicals in India and amongst the top 10 in the world.
It is also the world’s largest integrated producer of polyester fibre and yarn.