By Aplefe Ojong
The Cross River State Government has unveiled plans to establish an Eco friendly bricks factory from waste as part of the deliberate policy thrust of the Governor Ben Ayade’s administration to covert waste to wealth and to mitigate the amount of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.
The factory will transform plastic bottles and plastic disposable bags/sachet water bags into Eco-Bricks and beautiful bags in the state said Dr. Raphael Ofuka, the Secretary of the Cross River State Environment and Carbon Emission Board, and a board member, Collins Ogar on Friday while speaking live on the ‘Ayade’s Cross River’, a program anchored by Beatrice Akpala and Solomon Asha, on 105.5 Paradise FM, Calabar, on the topic, “Carbon Offset, Carbon Footprints and Waste to Wealth in Cross River State.”
Elaborating on the planned setting up of Eco-Bricks factory that will utilize plastic bottles, disposable bags and sachet water remains to produce fanciful, durable eco-bricks and beautiful hand bags, Collins Ogar explained that the Board has established a robust relationship with the Ministries of Environment, Climate Change, Agriculture and other related agencies and is equally collaborating with the Organization for Positive Sensitivity (OPS) to ensure the realization of the dream.
He explained that currently Marian Market is a pilot scheme for the waste sorting to get the needed waste and transformed into eco-bricks and fanciful bags and that between now and August enough sensitization will be achieved at the Marian Market in that direction, stressing that at the end those who shall sort their waste and bring same to Marian market will be entitled to a token and added that materials for the technology are source locally and are available in abundance as it is friendly, cost effective, durable and beautiful.
Speaking on the carbon emission tax, both the Board Secretary, Dr. Raphael Ofuka and Collins Ogar disclosed that it was part of the effort by the board to ensure that members of the society contribute a token to the fight against carbon emission to bring about a sustainable living and longevity amongst our people and that the tax will be a small token which will be paid by both commercial and private car owner, industries/businesses among others, allaying the people’s fear, they assured that the board will not go into households to demand for the carbon emission tax.
On what each segment of the society and different type of businesses will pay as tax, they said that the board is still on the process and that it is a step by step process which will ensure that whether you work in an office, (public and private), business owner taxi driver etc. you will contribute a token , while explaining that the board target to mitigate and reduce carbon emission will be a yearly percentage target and that presently they are working on the baseline for Calabar city, all the towns and local government Areas in the state to achieve a certain percentage reduction yearly and that successive administrations will build upon the baseline that is being worked out by the board.
They also called on Cross Riverians and other Nigerians residing in the state to change their attitudes and embrace environment friendly policies of the government as well as reduce activities that promote the emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, stressing the need for the people to support government’s direction on the creation of quality environment to ensure longevity and checkmate depleting diseases that are prevalent in today’s society.
Dr. Ofuka had earlier explained that the carbon mitigation program is aimed at contributing positively towards carbon which is being emitted daily through cooking, production of goods and services, cars, generators among others, adding that the most effective means of reducing carbon being emitted into the atmosphere is through the planting of trees as well as avoiding the depleting of forests resources., and called on the people of the state to imbibe the culture of trees planting.
To instill the consciousness and the culture of protecting safe environment through individual and corporate reduction in activities that promote carbon emission, and to support government’s policy in that direction, the Cross River state Environment and Carbon Emission Board has come up with a pledge for the people of the state which states thus: “I pledged to no longer add to the problem but be a solution provider; I will cut my carbon use by 25 percent each of the next three years; I will offset the carbon I emit; I will encourage my friends to do the same; I will support policies which reduce carbon
pollution; I will do my share.”
Carbon offset is the reduction in a emission of carbon dioxide or greenhouse gases made in order to compensate for or to offset an emission that has been done in the society, while the carbon footprint are possibly the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere as a result of the activities of a particular individual , organization or community.
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