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World Sustainability Day: IIT Madras launches 'Punch the Plastic' campaign, other contests, hackatho

On the eve of World Sustainability Day, IIT Madras launched three events - the 'Punch the Plastic' campaign, a monkey-proof dustbin hackathon, and a sustainability champions contest. By India Today Web Desk: On World Sustainability Day, celebrated on the fourth Wednesday of October every year, IIT Madras has launched the 'Punch the Plastic' campaign. The campaign looks for a new method to collect clean and dry plastic which is considered non-recyclable and then send them for recycling options such as pyrolysis.

IIT Madras students, faculty and staff have formed a 'Sustainable Campus Collective' and they are trying to raise awareness among residents on waste segregation, and minimizing water and energy usage. Professor Indumathi Nambi, Faculty Advisor, Sustainable Campus Collective, IIT Madras, said, "The Sustainability Drive aims at making IIT Madras a truly sustainable campus in three aspects - zero waste campus, low carbon and low water footprint."

Punch the Plastic drive: Food packaging plastic such as from food delivery companies and small snack packets are usually deemed nonrecyclable as they are dirty and mixed with organic waste. Two models of a simple hook device have been designed by IIT Madras students to collect the plastic packaging which are clean and dry and send them for recycling options such as pyrolysis.

Since IIT Madras has a significant monkey population which often forages for food in dustbins and creates waste management problems, several such models have come up before. Sustainability champions contest: A sustainability contest will be held to select the sustainability champions among the residential, academic and hostel zones and also among the vendors and service providers in the campus. To expand their reach, IIT Madras also plans to host contests across schools, hostels, and academic and residential zones which can encourage residents to live sustainably by internalizing and implementing the concept in their everyday lives.

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