8 June 2018

Nigeria: Oando Champions Ozumba Mbadiwe Waterway Cleanup

In commemoration of the 2018 World Environment Day themed: 'Beat Plastic Pollution', Oando Plc championed a clean-up exercise of Cowrie Creek,Ozumba Mbadiwe water way.

World Environment Day is an initiative by the United Nations (UN) to encourage worldwide awareness and action to protect the environment.

It is seen as the "people's day" set aside to do something to take care of the earth.

Speaking on the significance of the initiative, the General Manager, Operations Integrity, Oando Energy Resources, Kayode Boladale, said: "We have taken up the mantle to clean up the Cowrie Creek,Ozumba Mbadiwe waterway in a bid to beat plastic pollution which is a menace in Lagos. Did you know that plastic accounts for 10 per cent of all the waste we generate? Did you know we buy one million plastic bottles every minute? Did you know it takes up to 450 years for plastic to decompose? With facts like these it is imperative that we start to rethink the way we use plastic for the good of the planet. We championed this initiative in order to set an example for others; individuals and companies to follow."

With a population of over 170 million people, Nigeria produces more plastic waste than the infrastructure can manage.

Lagos, a population of 21 million inhabitants, produces upwards of 10,000 metric tonnes of plastic waste daily.

Only 40 per cent of the waste is properly disposed of, the remaining 60 per cent litters the roads and waterways.

In an interview on the current state of waste in the waterways, Managing Director, Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA), Damilola Famakinwa, said: "Lagosians litter the waterways with empty plastic bottles, nylon and various kinds of filth. This is totally unacceptable by any standard. We even have organisations emptying their waste water and various chemical pollution in the waterways."

Plastic is extremely durable and environmental experts have reported that, "every bit of plastic ever made still exists."

Speaking at the clean-up exercise, an employee of Oando who took part in the clean-up said: "I couldn't have asked for a better way to spend my day; knowing that I played a part to reduce plastic pollution and in the process clean up my environment gives me a sense of fulfilment, I saved a few marine animals today. Having witnessed first-hand the amount of waste in our waterways, I've learnt that we have to treat our environment with respect, by disposing our refuse properly."

The waterway clean up exercise is one of the many ways Oando Plc is actively supporting the implementation ofthe United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.

The company recognises SDGs as a global priority for the next 15 years and has made it a responsibility to incorporate practices and initiatives within its operations that support the successful implementation of the SDGs.

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