The Ogun State government has pledged to take bold steps in managing chemicals and waste in order to improve environmental governance and develop a sustainable economy.
Dapo Abiodun, made this known during the Second Chemical Handlers and Users workshop, held Providence Events Centre, Abeokuta.
The workshop organised by Ogun State Environmental Protection Agency (OGEPA), themed, “Circular Solutions For a Sustainable Economy”, aimed at educating handlers and users of chemicals on use and effective management.
Governor Abiodun while disclosing that investor-friendly policies had been put in place to support enterprises and reduce risks that industrial wastes might pose to residents noted that conventional linear approaches and circular solutions will be implemented.
Represented by his deputy, Engr. Noimot Salako-Oyedele, Governor Abiodun warned that, “Henceforth, every industry, individual or facility domiciled in the state, with the capacity to use and store chemicals are expected to submit inventory for monitoring, tracking, evaluation and waste management to the Ogun State Environmental Protection Agency (OGEPA)”.
He assured the OGEPA of continuous support in its monitoring, enforcement, research, and development of alternate applications for waste.
In his contribution, Dr. Iziaq Salako, Minister of State for the Environment, said that the workshop’s theme was appropriate given the challenges facing the world on addressing the use of chemicals and their detrimental effects on public health.
“My Ministry has prioritised initiatives and programmes to promote circular management of wastes in our budgetary submission for the 2024 fiscal year. Ogun State, alongside other selected states of the federation would be witnessing more special intervention projects of the federal government, to promote waste to wealth and waste to energy this year”, he said.
The Minister urged the public to take advantage of the opportunities that sustainable chemicals and waste management have to offer to develop a healthy population and economy.
In his remarks, Head, Geo Circle Lafarge, Daniel Adedokun, said that it was high time lasting solution to waste management are proffered, promising that government would continue to assiduously work to eradicate indiscriminate dumping of wastes.
Also speaking, General Manager, Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA), Dr. Tunde Ajayi, decried the menace of environmental degradation, pledging continued support to agencies working tirelessly to check environmental pollution and waste management.
Earlier, Commissioner for Environment, Dr. Ola Oresanya, noted that the workshop was a pointer to government’s commitment to environmental responsibility and sustainable practices, adding that it would address challenges posed by chemicals and wastes in our evolving landscape.
Dr. Oresanya explained that chemical wastes remain in the air, waterways, and land, thereby exerting hazardous effects on the citizens, revealing that OGEPA has the core mandate of ensuring that chemical wastes generated within and around the state is effectively managed, as well as prevent their improper handling, storage and disposal, to ensure a healthy and safe environment for all.