Govt urged to implement National Plastic Management Policy

The Projects Coordinator at the Institute of Industrial research of the Council for Scientific and (CSIR-IIR), EkuaAfrakomaArmoo, has urged government to implement the National Plastic Management Policy to comprehensively manage plastic waste in the country.

The Ghana National Plastic Management Policy, which was designed in March 2020, aims to use the comprehensive management of plastic across their life-cycle and value-chain as a vehicle for sustainable development, enabling a shift towards a plastics circular economy.

The policy lays a foundation to enable the creation of an entirely new industry for redesigning, recovering and recycling plastics, preventing pollution of the environment and communities and creating many new jobs in the green economy.

In an interview with the Ghanaian Times in Accra, last Thursday, MsArmoo stressed that if the policy was adopted, it would reduce Ghana’s plastic waste by 20 per cent.

 “If the policy restricts mass gatherings from serving plastic bottled water and allows the use of dispensers, it’s going to reduce Ghana’s plastic waste problem drastically,” she said.

MrsArmoo disclosed that CSIR-IIR had developed several innovative ways to effectively manage waste in the country, with the focus on anaerobic digestion technologies (biogas).

“Weare looking at ways to make the technology more accessible to use and make more efficient in our local environment,” she said.

She added that anaerobic digestion technologies had been in existence for a very long time, however, the CSIR-IIR had been fine-tuning the technology to fit our local environment.

The Project Coordinator added that the adoption of incinerators was also a viable option of managing waste.

“We have been able to build an efficient and environmentally friendly incinerator for VALCO to deal with the leftover pieces from the aluminum process, the heat that is obtained during the incineration process is reversed back into their manufacturing process,” she explained.

She indicated that as part of the goals of CSIR-IIR to contribute towards the effective management of waste in the country, “no waste has left the premises of the CSIR-IIR within the last four years without being processed into usable products.”

She explained that waste was properly segregated; placed in a bio-digester and the incinerator; and the end-product from the waste process is used on the farms at the institute.

MrsArmoo said the institute usedthe substrate (end-product of the bio-digestion process) as manure on the farms to save them money whilst boosting their farming activities, instead of depending solely on fertilizers, adding that “manure is environmentally friendly and was not harmful to the environment.”

The Project Coordinator bemoaned that the country is doing very poor in terms of waste management.

“The country is doing poorly when it comes to waste management and the recovery process is very slow as compared to other countries,” she added.

BY JESSEL LARTEY THERSON-COFIE

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