Eunice Hilda Ampomah, GNA
Accra, Nov.7, GNA – Nestle Ghana Limited, in partnership with the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, has distributed tricycles and helmets to the Pure Water Waste Pickers Association to help them in the execution of their operations.
The Association also received 500 gloves and 500 waste picking tools.
Nestle also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Association to provide it with five more tricycles and to monitor the effective usage of the logistics to ensure that the Association increase its output.
Under the MoU, the Association is expected to collect at least 50 tonnes of plastic waste monthly for a period of two years.
Mr Ousmane Kamara, the Director of Finance, Nestle Ghana Limited, and Mr Elvis Oppong, President of the Plastic Pickers Association signed the MoU on behalf of their respective institutions.
Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, the Minister of MESTI, said the Ministry had for a period been subjected to pressure from individuals and institutions to ban plastic usage, however, it identified that the ban was not the ultimate solution.
The necessary action, he said, was to identify better ways to use and reuse plastics to generate revenue for the state.
“When we are able to turn plastic into a marketable commodity, it would generate revenue for the state and help to support the works of the Association,” he said.
The Minister said Government was reviewing the “Plastic Levy,” and gave an assurance that funds generated from the levy when successfully approved, would be used to promote the fights against indiscriminate plastic waste disposal.
Prof. Frimpong-Boateng after listening to the challenges the Association faced, appealed to the police not to be a hindrance to the operations of the Association, especially from the point of collection of waste through transportation to recycling points.
“Please, desist from collecting illegal amounts of monies from plastic waste pickers to enable them to effectively work to protect the environment.”
Mr Kamara said plastic served basic needs, but also polluted the environment, thereby affecting human and animal life because of poor management after use.
He said a 2019 US Embassy report stated that 3,000 tonnes of plastic waste generated on daily basis in Ghana, were left without recycling, adding that, in another report released by Veolia, stated that in Accra alone, 75,000 tonnes of uncollected plastic waste were dumped or burned every year.
Nestle, he said, had set a global ambition to have 100 per cent of its packaging materials recyclable or reusable by 2025 and entreated the public to join forces to work collectively with strategic partnerships to fight the canker of pollution.
On his part, Mr Oppong, expressed the gratitude of the Association to the Ministry and Nestle, saying, the logistics would help them to collect more tonnes of plastic waste daily.
“I want to assure the Ministry and Nestle that, they will see a change in the environment, especially at the shores and areas well identified with plastic waste,” he said.
He appealed to the Ministry to allocate one site for plastic pickers to dispose of waste for easy transportation to recycling companies.