Launch of National Plastic Action Partnership timely

Launch of National Plastic Action Partnership timely

Dealing with plastic waste has become a headache for governments around the world, and in Ghana a lot of resources have been pumped into it but it seems there is no clear antidote in sight.

Many solutions, including a complete ban on its manufacture and importation into the country, have been proffered.


But a ban may be the last thing a government would want to consider, looking at the many people who are employed, directly or indirectly, along the plastic value chain, in the midst of the teeming unemployed youth and graduates.

However, taking this decision is also dangerous, against the backdrop that Ghana’s population of approximately 30 million people is said to generate over 3,000 tonnes of waste from plastics daily, which constitutes about 14 per cent of the entire municipal solid waste accumulated in the country.

The destructive nature of plastic is well documented. When its particles break down, plastic gains new physical and chemical properties that increase the risk of having toxic effect on organisms, both on land and in water bodies, including the oceans. We need not be reminded that this poses a great threat to food security.

It is in this vein that the Daily Graphic supports moves that will help deal with the plastic menace in the country. We thus commend the government for launching the National Plastic Action Partnership that is set to be the game-changer in the management of plastics in the country.

As we understand it, the initiative will lead to the promotion of green alternatives and nurture the development of new business models for job creation throughout the value chain.

The plan will also develop systems and infrastructure across the country to ensure that plastic waste generated is turned into value-added products.

We note that apart from the project ensuring a clean environment, which feeds into the President’s vision of making Accra, and by extension Ghana, the cleanest in Africa, it is also going to improve the economic fortunes of the country.

The Daily Graphic is particularly happy that President Akufo-Addo has given a strong assurance about the government’s full commitment to the successful implementation of the programme that will be outlined under the partnership.

This is instructive, judging from the many initiatives that have been rolled out in the country over the years but which were not fully carried through because of the lack of political commitment, among many other factors.

We thus encourage the government not to rest on its laurels and also give up in the face of any challenges but see to the full implementation of the plan. But we have an advice: Many a time, such programmes and initiatives have been abandoned because the people who are to help carry it through have not been fully involved and carried along.

The various programmes under the initiative should, therefore, be broken down, outlined and explained to the people in order to get their buy-in and involvement to ensure its success. This is important, especially when the plastic action partnership is the first in Africa and the second globally.

We call on the media to sustain the awareness creation, while academia should continue with its research, with the private sector enhancing its investment in plastic waste disposal, even as the initiative is rolled out, so that we can have the best out of the programme.

In the midst of the complexities of the ever-increasing waste generation and attendant disposal challenges, it is gratifying that there is hope at the end of the tunnel.

This is an opportunity we must all embrace to deal effectively with the plastic menace.

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