Foot Footprint Curriculum 2005


Making connections

Cocacola & Chai Footprint of Cocacola
Footprint of Chai
Circles and Lines


Bhopal & doing good
The Story




plastic bags


Plastic is a material of the 20th century. With the relatively recent arrival of plastics to India and the rapid growth of the industry over the last seven years, we are only now witnessing its impact on Indian society, culture, and landscape. Most visibly plastic bottles and bags litter both rural and urban India and are only partly dealt with by an army of destitute scavengers, euphemised as ‘ragpickers’.

What do I know? / What do I not know? / What do I guess?
Bring in as many plastic things as you can find
What can we do because of plastic (What couldn't we do before plastic)
What is plastic replacing?


1. Plastic is made of OIL + Chemicals

Fossil fuels / where in the world / where in India /
Different plastics / different chemicals / Different combinations / Different additives, softeners, colours, stabilisers

1. Poly Vinyl Chloride (PVC) (examples)
2. Polyurethane (PU)
3. Polystyrene (PS)
4. Polycarbonate (PC)
5 . Polyethylene-terephthalate (PET)
6. Polyethylene/Polypropylene (PE/PP)

Cradle to the grave

2. One plastic: PVC

3. The myth of recycling

4. The myth of saving forests

5. Bio-plastics

6. What is the Government doing?

7. What’s the International Government doing?

8. Return to sender

9. What can we do? The water bottle


In 1998 plastic bags clogged the drains of Bombay causing floods. In the last few years a number of large-scale fires erupted in Delhi markets where waste plastics are stored and sold causing an unknown number of human health problems from the release of highly toxic chemicals into the air. Autopsies on cows in the capital have found their stomachs stuffed with as much as 110 pounds of plastics. The animals die a slow painful death from convulsions. Less visibly, the plastics industry is inextricably linked with the ‘liberalisation and globalisation’ path the government of India is taking: the process of urbanisation, the creation of new consumer markets. The death knell for crores of jute farmers and other rural workers. Plastics encase, protect and enable modern technological revolutions. In agricultural regions, plastic drip irrigation systems and mulching facilitate the conversion of land from subsistence to cash crops. Plastic packaging enables the transportation of goods from local to global markets. Over 50% of plastics produced in India are used as non-biodegradable, disposable packaging – material that is created to be waste. Plastics are an integral part of consumer culture, in cars, home entertainment systems, and domestic appliances. In software-city, Bangalore, the new high-tech revolution of computers is encased in plastic – telecommunication wires, hardware, software and packaging. In hospitals medical equipment uses once-only plastics, sterilised and shrink-wrapped, plastic artificial joints, and heart valves. Life-saving equipment only made possible through the invention of plastics.