Ghana’s waste management agenda has received a major boost with the installation of a state-of-the-art integrated recycling and compost plant in Accra to properly manage solid waste and create wealth out of it for the people.
Described by waste management experts as the game-changer in the industry, the plant has come at a time that the country is struggling to effectively and efficiently manage solid waste which is engulfing our cities and towns.
The plant utilizes modernised technology to recycle organic, plastic and other solid waste materials into compost and useable raw materials to feed the agricultural sector and industries respectively.
With the daily capacity to process 200 metric tonnes of solid waste and 100 tonnes of organic fertilizer, the 20 million-dollar plant built by the waste management giant Zoomlion Ghana Limited, is the first of 16 similar plants to be constructed across Ghana.
Organic fertilizer from each of the 16 plants is expected to help government to cut down on the annual import of chemical fertilizers by about 216,000 bags, something that will significantly save Ghana some foreign exchange to stabilise the value of the cedi.
Managers have put the current solid waste recovery rate of the plant at 80 per cent, but hope to increase it to 100 per cent in the coming months. According to them, it currently has the capacity to handle 800 tons of solid waste on a 16 hour shift.
With the start of this plant, waste management companies and individuals operating what is commonly referred to as ‘borla taxis’ will now have a place to discharge their solid waste at no cost to them.
This will be a major boost to their businesses as it will reduce their turnaround time for waste collection in the city as well as reduce the pressure on the few landfill sites whose management has been a problem in the country.
The plant has been designed to automatically sort out mixed waste materials and group plastics, paper, aluminum, glass and metals, before these waste are processed into raw materials to feed existing and yet to be established factories.
“In effect, waste processing and recycling will be near to 100% recovery,” Executive Chairman of Jospong Group of companies, Dr Joseph Siaw Agyepong said at the commissioning of the plant last Friday at the Accra Waste Recovery Park on the mortuary road.
Three consignments of the plant have already arrived in the country for installation in Tamale, Kumasi and Takoradi by August 2019, he announced.
The initiative, Dr Siaw Agyepong said, ties into the government’s agenda for creating jobs for the people, indicating that for the Accra plant alone, “2000 direct and indirect jobs will be created along the value chain for both indigenes and other professionals”.
He said the initiative fits perfectly into the government’s policy of making Accra the cleanest city in Africa, and also supports government’s One District, One Factory initiative.
Zoomlion has for the past decade been at the forefront of the country’s waste management agenda and introduced several innovative ways of helping government achieve its environmental and sanitation goals.
For many stakeholders and government, Zoomlion’s interventions since 2006 have been overwhelming and impactful, something Dr Siaw Agyepong said they will build on through the introduction of environmentally friendly and innovative solutions for waste management.
Vice president Dr Mahamudu Bawumia commended Zoomlion for taking up the challenge to support government’s vision of improving environmental cleanliness, noting government is mindful of ensuring sustainable waste management in the country.
“Let me commend Zoomlion Ghana Limited, through its executive chairman Dr Joseph Siaw Agyepong and its technical partner Messers Komptech Limted- Austria for demonstrating leadership in introducing the integrated waste recycling and composting technology,” he said.
Dr Bawumia lauded the Zoomlion for what he described as the company’s “immense investments” in environmental sanitation.
He observed the biggest challenge facing the country is the threat posed by plastic filth, which he said has engulfed Ghanaians over the years but was optimistic that with the operationalisation of the plant, the threat will be minimised.
The vice president underscored the need for the operators of the plant to plastic product manufacturers to contribute their quota.
He said government alone cannot achieve the goal of making Accra the cleanest city in Africa and invariably Ghana.
“We know that government alone does not have the requisite logistics and capacity to achieve this, we will therefore continue to collaborate with private sector operators like Zoomlion and other service providers to achieve this,” he said.
He thus asked all metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies to patronize the plant, and also educate their people to ensure that the country’s by laws on environmental sanitation are enforced.
By Stephen Kwabena Effah|3news.com|Ghana