AGL-Damang Mine joins world to celebrate Environment Day


Abosso Goldfields Limited (AGL-Damang Mine), through the Gold Fields Ghana Foundation, has joined the world to celebrate Environment Day on the theme ‘Beat plastic pollution’ at Kyekyewere in the Prestea Huni Valley municipality of the Western Region.

The event was attended by schools within the two circuits in the municipality, workers from the Damang Mine, chiefs and assembly members among others, and had speakers raising concern about how plastics have become a menace and suggesting remedies such as the re-introduction of paper-bags, women going to market and shopping with a basket among others.

Florence Ansere-Bioh, Community Affairs and Public Relations Manager of Gold Fields Ghana, explained that the Day is meant to encourage individuals to work hard and make changes in their daily lives in order to reduce plastic pollution.

“Taking care of the environment is an important responsibility shared by every individual, family and organisation,” she said.

Mr. Samuel Hadjor, Acting Operations Manager of Abosso Goldfields Limited, also noted that materials that have proven to be of concern and a threat to the environment are plastics. He added that plastic pollution is one of the most pressing environmental challenges for the current generation.

“Ghana generates around 1 million tonnes of plastic waste each year, but only recycles about 5 percent of it while the rest end up in landfills, oceans, rivers and ecosystems – harming wildlife, human health and the climate. Today, plastic clogs sewages and cause floods; and our landfills leach into the ocean. Micro-plastics find their way into the food we eat and the water we drink. Many plastic products contain hazardous additives which may pose a threat to our health,” he added.

He encouraged stakeholders to adopt a circular economy approach that minimises waste and maximises reuse and recycling. “We need to support innovation and investment in alternatives to single-use plastic packaging and products, as well as raise awareness and educate consumers about the consequences of their choices and actions.”

He said governments, businesses and individuals must collaborate to develop comprehensive waste management systems that prioritise recycling and the circular economy.

“Additionally, we must recognise the significance of community engagement and involvement in beating plastic pollution. Initiatives such as beach clean-ups, waste segregation programmess and promoting sustainable lifestyles can have a profound impact on reducing plastic waste. By fostering a sense of environmental responsibility and stewardship, we can inspire future generations to cherish and protect our planet,” Mr. Hadjor said.

He added that: “As we celebrate World Environment Day, let us we are the custodians of this planet, entrusted with the responsibility of preserving its beauty and diversity for future generations. Beating plastic pollution demands our immediate attention, unwavering commitment and concerted action. Together, we can create a world where plastic pollution is but a distant memory”.

Christian Debrah, Environmental Manager of Gold Fields Ghana Limited, said the fight against plastic pollution requires an all hands-on deck approach to reach desirable results. “AGL as a company is contributing to this fight by ensuring plastic waste is recycled and that plastic waste generated on site is segregated and stored appropriately. The plastic waste is then taken off-site by a contractor who processes the waste into plastic pellets for sale to plastic manufacturing companies in Accra.”

He continued that over the past five years, approximately 777.3 tonnes of recyclable plastics have been sent for recycling, thereby reducing the amount of plastic waste sent to landfill sites.

Mr. Debrah said the journey to beating plastic pollution is an arduous one, and that AGL will continue to show relentless efforts in educating and creating awareness on the need to manage plastic waste by employing effective means of waste management practices based on reduction, reuse and recycling.

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