Eight (8) Major manufacturing companies in Ghana have made significant progress towards a commitment to support Government’s efforts at delivering sustainable plastic waste management solutions through advocacy, public awareness and multi stakeholder collaborations.
The companies would operate and carry out their activities through a coalition called the Ghana Recycling Initiative by Private Enterprises (GRIPE).
GRIPE is an industry-led initiative under the auspices of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) and currently has Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Ghana; Dow Chemical West Africa Limited; Fan Milk Ghana Limited; Guinness Ghana Breweries Limited; Nestlé Ghana;
PZ Cussons Ghana Limited; Unilever Ghana and Voltic (GH) Limited, as founding members.
The coalition, among others, seeks to integrate sustainable waste management solutions, advocate improved waste management practices, contribute to increased collection and recycling rates countrywide, and provide employment opportunities through scalable recycling solutions.
At the launch of the Ghana Recycling Initiative by Private Enterprises (GRIPE) in Accra, Madam Joyce Ahiadorme, who spoke for the coalition said, members acknowledged, collaboration across sectors was needed for prosecuting the agenda to move Ghana towards a plastic-free environment.
She added “to address the issue of plastic waste management from an industry approach, plastic user companies, under AGI’s support, are leading through the formation of a more ambitious, centralized and systemic approach, thus the creation of GRIPE”.
Madam Ahiadorme, outlined GRIPE’s programme of activities as including data collection and research, public advocacy, multi-stakeholder collaboration and the implementation of second life solutions.
Mr Ralph Ayitey, AGI Executive Committee member, said the disposal and mismanagement of plastic waste is a national concern and required concerted efforts by all stakeholders.
He said the initiative to manage plastic waste in a more sustainable manner by AGI member companies was laudable.
“I believe plastic waste management requires an attitudinal change in the long run and therefore we must all embrace the educational aspect which may require a long haul,” he said.
The Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources, Mr Kofi Adda, said the initiative by industry is laudable and will go a long way to consolidate the new National Total Sanitation campaign and existing national policies on sanitation.
“We recently launched a National Total Sanitation campaign to tackle sanitation in our major cities. We recognize that Government cannot tackle the issue of sanitation and plastic waste alone, hence the efforts by industry to rise up to the challenge and help make a difference, this time around, is laudable and worthy of every support they may require to succeed,” he said.
He urged other manufacturing companies to join the coalition to tackle the menace of plastic waste in the country.
A Memorandum of Understanding was signed by members of the coalition at the launch event to signify the formalization of their commitment and to guarantee the pooling of resources towards the attainment of the set objectives of GRIPE.
The launch event was well patronised by stakeholders in the sanitation and waste management space including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Ministry of Environment Science, Technology and Innovation, among others.