By Davies Iheamnachor
PORT HARCOURT: As the world marks Environment Day, some Non-Governmental Organisations, yesterday, took to the streets of Port Harcourt, to give support to reducing the wastes that have taken over some streets of the city in Rivers State.
The NGOs while carrying out the outreach also advocated for a government policy or legislation that would give impetus to waste recycling in the state, adding that such would put to end waste management crisis.
Speaking, Grace Alawa, the Executive Director of Sustainable Actions for Nature, SAN, said outreach was organised by Sustainable Action for Nature, SAN, AIESEC Port Harcourt, YALI Rivers, Future Savers, African Cleanup Initiative, ACI, Centre for Sustainable Development Initiative, SUSTYVIBE (as convener) as part of events to mark the year’s Environment Day tagged, ‘Only one Earth’.
Alawa said the essence of the cleaning up that started at Abali Park was part of actions to mitigate against climate change, adding that the partnership would be able to reach out to the people.
She said: “We came out as volunteers to try and clear this park. Make it clean for them to stay in. UN recently passed that a sustainable environment is part of human right that is the reason we are here. We need to come to the streets for people to see.
“When we entered this park today there was liters everywhere. The people sit down here and inhale all the dirt’s. It can lead to diseases and ailments that they won’t know are caused by the dirty environment.
“We have first of all cleaned the environment so that it will be conducive for everyone to stay. We will go and create awareness that they should be taking care of the environment.
However, Anita Ike, Team Leader for SustyVibes, advocated for policy or legislation from the state government that would enforce waste recycling.
Ike noted that if wastes were being recycled that the streets would not be litered with dirt, stating that waste management has become a huge challenge to the state..
She said: “Sanitation is a big problem, waste management is another issues entirely here. We have not even gone to the issues of artisanal refineries.
“The recycling system is poor in the state. It is difficult to recycle because people are not educated on it. There is also need for policy or legislation that would instill recycling.
“Legislation is one thing, been able to implement it is another thing. The earth is getting hotter because of man’s activities. We need good environment before we talk of election.
“I beg on government that all that needs to be done in terms of policy and legislation, enforcement needs to be given due attention to keep this city free of dirt.