The Lagos State Government is making a move to fully implement a circular economy, encouraging residents to reduce waste being generated, reuse and recycle.
Towards this, the State has convened stakeholders’ forum in Ikeja on facilitating the transition into a circular economy and the building of an environmentally resilient State.
Chief Resilient Officer, Lagos State Resilience Office, Dr Folayinka Dania explained that already, a number of projects have been embarked upon to kickstart the full implementation process.
Dania listed this to include the Eko Circular Podcast to educate residents, a Lagos Circular challenge for business owners to help Lagos achieve the set goals and several multi-agencies’ projects involving Lagosians in the efforts to reduce the over 13,000 metric tonnes of waste generated daily in the State, all of which end up at the dump sites.
“There are various things you can do in terms of resilience as a person living in Lagos, sort your waste, separate plastic, it will have a lot of impact, it will reduce waste in land fills, reduce flooding to a large extent, it will ensure some of the emissions that go into the atmosphere from burning some of these things, in the last, we come to say this is what we are doing, but now we are saying as a resident, be part of the process, this is how we can ensure sustainability” Dania said.
According to her, “Circular economy is about reducing waste to the barest minimum. Lagos State, as it currently stands generates about 13,0000 metric tonnes of waste per day and what we are propagating is how do we ensure that we can turn this around in ways that are good for the climate, good for health and good for the people.
“What we are trying to do is to put in place structures that ensure that we reduce our waste to the barest minimum by reducing our waste and by also recycling our waste and that is all what circular economy is about.”
The General Manager, Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency, LASEPA, Dr Dolapo Fasawe, whose agency has been able to eliminate single use plastic, pointed out that circular economy has become a global trend.
Fasawe noted that though plastic products could be totally banned, yet, residents could generate wealth, by recycling them while also making the environment safe.
“People, Planet, Profit: that’s the key message of a circular economy and environmental sustainability, if you are using non-biodegradable plastic, please reuse it, refurbish it, you can use it up to ten times and then recycle it.
“There are off-takers who will take your plastic and exports in pellets to China and used it in making chairs that would be brought back and sold here in Nigeria, that’s an example of a circular economy,” he said.
The Consultant engaged by the State to facilitate Circular economy and Resilience, Ms Nonny Ugboma announced that three Council areas, namely; Ikeja, Alimosho and Oshodi had been chosen as pilots for the Circular Economy transition process.
“Over the next six months, residents in the pilot Council Areas would be encouraged to embrace a circular economy and monitored for behavioural change,” she said.
She added: “What we are doing is to facilitate the integration of different things that are happening in the circular economy space and environmental resilience space.
“Essentially, there are four deliverable for us, we are going to promote the circularity gap working with the agencies and we are also going to produce some contents that will help the leveraging and to educate and inform, get collaborations across the state on circular economy and resilience. Also, we will help develop a dashboard that would integrate private sectors, public sectors, individuals and the community.”