The Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) has revealed that imposition of indirect waste management fee on vessels, which called on the country’s ports served as a demotivation for crew to dispose their waste improperly at sea.
Mr James Benjamin Gaisie, General Manager in charge of Estate and Environment, GPHA, in an interaction with the Ghana News Agency in Tema said, “this indirect payment system demotivates vessels’ crew from dumping their waste improperly, because they pay for it regardless, there is no way a shipping line will pay for service and refuse to be served.”
Mr Gaisie said the fee was not profit-oriented but rather to cater for the service of proper disposal of waste from the vessels.
“In determining the fee to be charged, the cost is only for handling the waste and disposal, there is no profit element in this, so the port isn’t even directly benefitting from this,” he said.
He added that it was in line with the government’s policy to empower the private sector in port operations that the GPHA ceded the delivery of waste management services to private companies.
He said to ensure that the companies engaged were properly licensed and had the capacity to execute their function, rigorous procedures were adopted by the port in recruiting them.
Mr. Gaisie indicated that to ensure that the objective to minimize pollution by vessels was achieved, all the companies that were given the concession did an environmental impact assessment and obtained a permit from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
He added that with that, the EPA would be directly monitoring the process to ensure the collection, treatment, and disposal had followed the national waste regulations.
He said the GPHA made deliberate efforts to have regular consultation and meetings with various stakeholders in the port to help further streamline their activities in a bid to ensure the waste management services were provided at optimal efficiency.