The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has expressed its willingness to partner the Jospong Group of Companies (JGC), particularly its subsidiary company Zoomlion Ghana Limited (ZGL), and other waste management companies to keep the country clean.
The Executive Director of EPA, Dr. Henry Kwabena Kokofu who made this observation, expressed that the state agency is pleased with the activities of Zoomlion; stressing it will collaborate more with the company to save the environment.
He added that the EPA is poised to open its doors to collaborative work with private players in the waste management space to ensure their work is backed by compliance.
He therefore commended all private waste companies, especially Zoomlion, for their relentless efforts to rid the city of filth.
However, Dr Kokofu underscored that EPA will not hesitate in applying sanctions to whoever would want to thwart efforts of the private enterprises in their field of work by not complying with rules and regulations.
According to him, metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs) have the responsibility to effectively manage waste within their jurisdictions.
He therefore urged the MMDAs to step up their game in the management and disposal of waste, while urging Ghanaians to brace themselves for the reality of paying a bit more to ensure proper waste management in their communities.
“We must have a concerted effort in dealing with the waste we generate. The nation’s consciousness must be awakened, and all the religious and traditional leaders must join in awakening this consciousness among Ghanaians,” Dr. Kokofu said.
The EPA boss made these remarks on the back of a presentation by JGC at the ongoing COP 26 meeting of the UN Climate Change Conference on what the company is doing to help the country address negative impacts of climate change.
He said the EPA will also be monitoring every stage of the country’s waste disposal value chain.
This, he explained, will ensure government gets value for money in the management and disposal of waste.
He explained that the EPA’s decision was aimed at enabling them to track where and how, especially, electric waste is being disposed.
This collaboration with the private sector, he said, will be “Directed to seeing the point source of waste collection, particularly electrical and electronic waste: where they are being collected; the quantum collected; and where they are being transported to – the off-taker facility that will help them use the waste as raw material for the recycling plant”.
This when done, he said, will “help us as a nation acquire data on how much we are collecting”.
Meanwhile, Zoomlion has welcomed the EPA’s decision to monitor every stage of Ghana’s waste disposal value chain.
According to the company, this move spur them to continue delivering quality services.
At the ongoing world climate change summit, the Consultant-Engineering, Design and Projects Department, AFESC, Mr. Israel Boakye Acheampong, in a presentation, explained that JGC is using the opportunity presented at the COP26 to show its contributions in climate change space with innovative ideas to sustainably manage waste in Ghana with positive impact on climate.
He stressed the need for strategic partnerships to augment JGC’s skills. His presentation focused on JGC’s integrated waste management approach, which combines innovation, technology and management based on reuse, recycling, recovery and safe disposal of waste since 2006.
He said JGC wis ready to make effective use of various technical and financial opportunities at the COP26 to accelerate its support for Ghana in mitigating the impact of climate change.
To address indiscriminate dumping and burning of waste in Ghana, Mr. Boakye Acheampong noted that Zoomlion has hugely invested in storage facilities with bins and collection systems in the country, which have improved waste collection from homes, from about four percent in 2006 to about 21 percent in 2021.
On her part, the Managing Director of Africa Environmental Sanitation Consult – the research wing of the Jospong Group of Companies (JGC), Dr. Abena Antwi Asomaning, who is also at the climate change summit, minced no words in asserting that activities of Ghanaians have contributed to the climate change conditions.
“If not anything else, how people throw things about in the environment gives much work to do, and even how people dump things in the sea,” she said.
She also called for government’s intervention in recycling waste.