Categories: Environment

Why Lagos Govt Will Shut Down Olusosun Dump – Ambode

Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, has justified the decision of the state government to shut down the Olusosun dump site in Ojota area of the state.

In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary Habib Aruna on Saturday, the governor explained that the location of the facility was no longer healthy both for trading activities and residents living in the neighbourhood.

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Addressing scavengers and other workers at the site following the outbreak of fire on Wednesday, he said aside from the negative health implication of the site to the people, the structure of the facility was also risky and susceptible to all forms of hazards like the fire outbreak.

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Governor Akinwunmi Ambode gestures during a visit to the Olusosun dump in Ojota area of Lagos State on March 16, 2018.

 

Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, has justified the decision of the state government to shut down the Olusosun dump site in Ojota area of the state.

In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary Habib Aruna on Saturday, the governor explained that the location of the facility was no longer healthy both for trading activities and residents living in the neighbourhood.

Addressing scavengers and other workers at the site following the outbreak of fire on Wednesday, he said aside from the negative health implication of the site to the people, the structure of the facility was also risky and susceptible to all forms of hazards like the fire outbreak.

Governor Ambode, who visited the site on Friday for the second time since the fire outbreak, stressed that though it was gratifying that there was no casualty, the closure of the site became necessary owing to the need to forestall future occurrence and protect the health of residents.

“You see what happened is not as if anybody put fire there,” he said. “It is the refuse that are dumped there as well as the gas coming from underground and the hot sun which was around 36 to 38 degrees that caused the fire. We thank God nothing bad happened to those living there and around the neighbourhood.”

“What we have decided now is that there will not be dumping of refuse here any longer. But the most important aspect of it is that I cannot open my eyes and allow diseases to befall you here. At the end of the day, it is government that will still care for you. So, we have to sit down and agree,” he added.

The governor noted further that in as much as the government was unwilling to make people in the area lose their means of livelihood, it was important for all the stakeholders to agree on what to be done going forward.

He said: “I have not come to disturb you, what should be removed will be removed; we are not dumping waste here again. What will benefit all the people here is my concern, but we have to take it one after the other and we want all your leaders to cooperate with us.

“If not for the fact that we have fire stations, vehicles and fire officers, the fire would have spread more than this and if the fire had spread to the petrol station; that would have been a major disaster and we don’t want that to happen.”

Also speaking, Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Kehinde Bamigbetan, explained that the governor’s visits and the government’s decision to shut down the site were to protect the people and the environment to ensure their health and safety.

While directing waste collection operators to make use of the landfill site at Ewu Elepe in Ikorodu and that of Epe, Bamigbetan unveiled plans to transform Olusosun dumpsite into parks and gardens, among others, starting with perimeter fencing.

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According to him, “This action is in line with the Cleaner Lagos Initiative (CLI) of this administration and conforms to international best practices.”

Waste Waters: Plastic Rubbish Chokes Bali’s Sea

Millions of tourists are drawn to Bali’s palm-fringed scenery and rich marine life, but there is a danger lurking beneath its famously crystal-clear waters: a wasteland of plastic rubbish.

An underwater video shot by British diver Rich Horner this week showing a sea overflowing with plastic and other garbage at Manta Point, a well-known diving site near Bali’s main island, has highlighted trouble in paradise.

The holiday island has become an embarrassing poster child for Indonesia’s trash crisis.

The problem has grown so bad that officials in Bali last year declared a “garbage emergency” across a six-kilometre stretch of coast that included popular beaches Jimbaran, Kuta and Seminyak.

“The ocean currents brought us in a lovely gift of a slick of jellyfish, plankton, leaves, branches, fronds, sticks, etc…. Oh, and some plastic,” the diver wrote on his Facebook account.

His video, which has been viewed more than a million times, shows a diver swimming through a torrent of rubbish — including bottles, cups and straws — at Manta Point about 40 kilometres (25 miles) from Bali’s main island.

“Plastic bags, more plastic bags, plastic, plastic, so much plastic!” Horner said.

Indonesia, an archipelago of more than 17,000 islands, is the world’s second-biggest contributor to marine debris after China, and a colossal 1.29 million metric tons is estimated to be produced annually by the Southeast Asian nation.

The waves of plastic flooding into rivers and oceans have been causing problems for years, clogging waterways in cities, increasing the risk of floods, and injuring or killing marine animals who ingest or become trapped by plastic packaging.

“Microplastics can contaminate fish which, if eaten by humans, could cause health problems, including cancer,” I Gede Hendrawan, an environmental oceanography researcher at Bali’s Udayana University, previously told AFP.

Bali’s rubbish problem is at its worst during the annual monsoon season, when strong winds push marine flotsam on to the beach and swollen rivers wash rubbish from riverbanks to the coast.

“It tends to accumulate (at Manta Point) and the very large amount of rainfall probably has increased the level of garbage because it’s all swept from the mainland out to sea by the rains,” said Iwan Dewantama, a researcher at NGO Conservation International.

As part of its commitment under the UN Environment’s Clean Seas campaign, Jakarta has pledged to reduce marine plastic waste by 70 percent by 2025, through recycling, curbing the use of plastic bags, cleanup campaigns and raising public awareness.

Still, the scale of the problem facing Indonesia is huge, due to its population of more than 260 million and poor waste processing infrastructure.




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