The Minister of Environment Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr. Kwaku Afriyie has called for a re-orientation on the use and disposal of plastic to minimize the current pollution being experienced in the country.
He contended that plastic waste has become a challenge that requires collective effort to address.
Dr Afriyie was of the view that the success story of Rwanda after banning single use plastic was strongly aided by attitudinal change which is a critical element to surmount the challenge. He said this at an event to mark World Environment Day in Accra.
Celebrated globally on June 5 every year, the day is set aside by the United Nations (UN) to inspire worldwide awareness and action to protect the environment.
The theme for this year’s celebration is “Only One Earth” with the slogan “Beat Plastic Pollution.
Plastic Pollution has in recent years become a hydra-headed problem in Ghana.
There have been calls to ban the single use of plastic, but the proposition was fiercely resisted by some stakeholders in the value chain which led to its shelving.
Despite some interventions and innovations by government and the private sector, the challenge persists especially in the rainy season.
The Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr. Kweku Afriyie in an interview noted that ‘’Ghana is focusing on plastic this year because of the challenges being experienced due to its pollution’’.
”The Ministry has developed a model to complement those already being implemented to reduce the pollution”, he noted.
The Deputy Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Environment, Science and Technology Dr. Dickson Adomako Kissi called on Planning Authorities in Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies and the EPA to ”spearhead the fight against environmental degradation by enforcing the bye laws and regulations’’.
He further called on ”the current generation to restore and sustainably manage the environment for posterity.
The Presbyterian Church of Ghana which hosted the event at its Headquarters pledged its commitment to help maintain the environment.
A message from the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church, Rt Rev J.O.Y. Mante challenged Christendom and Ghanaians at large to be conscious at protecting the environment, stressing that negative tendencies such as indiscriminate disposal of waste among others have led to the degradation of natural resources.
The Moderator further urged all to embrace the tree planting agenda being championed by the government to safeguard the environment.
A number of organizations mounted an exhibition to showcase products made from plastic. They include: roofing sheets, tiles, lorry tires and construction material.