17 July 2011

East Africa: Panasonic, World Wildlife Rescue Environment in Region

Dar Es Salaam — Schools in East African countries are set to be transformed into model green schools following the pilot project aimed at teaching environmental management to schools.

This follows the joint venture between Panasonic Marketing Middle East and Africa and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) under Lake Victoria Catchment Environment Education Programme.

Under the programme, three schools, one from Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya in particular will be developed into a green model school, where students will be encouraged to develop green ideas, be environmentally responsible and take action to protect the planet.

Mr. Seiji Konayagi , The Managing Director of Panasonic Middle East and Africa told East African Business Week in Dar es Salaam that Panasonic's joint project with the WWF is designed to empower and help catchment communities, schools and regional partners to develop the knowledge to better sustain and manage natural resources.

He said "Through this project, we aim to be environmentally conscious and instill a sense of ecological responsibility in our youth by training them to be proactive in protecting their world for the sake of their future,"

"Panasonic will work with WWF to realize eco projects like Lake Victoria Environmental Educational Programme and initiatives like Eco Diary to promote a better understanding of the environment for African students," said Mr. Konayagi

Lake Victoria Environmental Education Programme has been designed to empower catchment communities, schools and regional partners with knowledge, motivation and abilities for sustainable use and management of natural resources.

Mr, Stephen Mariki, the WWF Country Dirrector said that the project entails working with community-based organisations and selected schools in Tanzania, Uganda, and Kenya and through the Panasonic-WWF partnership, the three East African States touted a programme that would cut emissions stemming from deforestation around Lake Victoria as a potential money-spinner.

He said "through this project, we aim to be environmental mindful and infuse a sense of ecological responsibility in our youth by training them to be down to business in protecting their world for the sake of their future genetations".

Mr. Kimuyo Mugo , Communication Manager of WWF Eastern and Southern Africa Region Programme Office (ESAPRO), said that Panasonic will provide the required equipment and other facilities to WWF so as to ensure the smooth running of the green revolution in the region.

In a line to ensure Environment protection in Africa, Panasonic and WWF also announced a special contest during Dar es Salaam International Trade Fair (DITF) whereby children aged six t0 15 years will learn various programmes on environment protection.

The competition named "Eco Picture Diary" will be on going programne throughout the Middle East and Africa, allowing children to submit pictures documenting eco activities they carried out in an effort to protect the environment.

"We will pursue tie initiatives based on introducing and expanding a range of superior green technology products to the existing range of eco products and spreading environmental awareness through education and supporting causes related activities," said Mr Konayagi.

Speaking with the East African Business Week in Dar es Salaam, Mr. Balbir

Sharma, Panasonic Sales manager for African Region said that Panasonic is currently working towards becoming the number one green innovation company in the electronics industry in the Middle East and Africa, in line with the Panasonic Eco Ideas Declaration.

"As a global leader in the electronics industry, it is our duty to ensure a sustainable future and Panasonic has made a commitment to drive eco-innovation by 2018, when the company will be celebrating its 100th birthday," said Mr. Sharma.

He said that Panasonic pledged to reduce Carbon emissions by 15% by 2015 and 50% of carbon emission in 2030 from the facility and double the sales of the industry-leading environmentally-conscious products in the region.

To achieve these goals, Panasonic will pursue initiatives based on two basic ideologies - Eco ideas for life styles and Eco ideas for business-style.

Introducing and expanding the range of superior green technology products to the existing range of eco-products, and spreading environmental awareness through education and supporting causes related activities.

Panasonic further aims to double the regional sales of Superior Green Products by March 2013. Superior Green Products, which have been internally certified by Panasonic, are those that have achieved the industry's top environmental performance in terms of energy saving, effective utilization of resources and the management of chemical substances.

Panasonic aims to educate 100,000 of its customers in the next three years by celebrating Green day on the first Friday of every month. By utilizing its showrooms across the region, which will be kitted out with Eco Kiosks, Panasonic aim to raise awareness on energy and water conservation, and waste management.

Customers, plus card members and children can learn from the showroom staff and eco-booklets which will be made available.

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