AS we prepare to celebrate the Easter holiday ahead, there is need for everyone to spare a thought for the environment, in particular, waste management issues.
As the nation celebrates the death and resurrection of Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, let us do so with the environment at heart. The best thing to do this year is to worship in a litter free environment, bearing in mind the popular saying, “Cleanliness is next to Godliness”.
A closer look at the bible clearly brings out that before God would meet with the Israelites, he would tell them to first of all cleanse themselves, a clear indicator that He loves cleanliness.
In order to achieve a clean, safe and healthy environment, we need to understand that every one of us has a role to play. The sustainable management of waste calls for an integrated approach, where everyone participates to make our nation clean and litter free.
Stakeholder participation therefore becomes key in resuscitating the aesthetic value of our once beautiful towns and cities. This week, we shall however, zero in on a few stakeholders as we look forward to the coming holiday; churches, motorists and public vehicle operators.
What Should the Church Do?
– Church leaders should mainstream environmental issues into their main programmes and teachings.
– The church can form departments or groups of individuals who assist in the coordination of waste management activities at the church. The responsible individuals should have adequate protective clothing.
– As part of empowering communities churches should source and keep clean up material for use during anti-litter programmes.
– Churches should develop waste management plans which act as a guide on what they should do with regards to the management of waste.
– When hosting national and international events churches should ensure they procure enough waste receptacles to be able to sustainably manage their waste.
– In areas of their operation churches should spearhead formation of waste management committees as a way of building a multi-stakeholder approach in addressing waste management challenges as well as adopting nearby zones to maintain.
– When advertising for conferences and other gatherings, churches should shun the use of posters and flyers as they are a source of litter. They should, however, use electronic means of advertising their events, such as the social media, radio, bill boards and television.
– Churches can adopt streets which they maintain and provide bins for. This should start from their places of worship and beyond. Remember “Charity begins at home”.
– Procurement at the Church should be of environmentally friendly products for example with preference of bottled drinks to cans, plates to kaylite, among others
Private Passenger Vehicles
– Desist from throwing litter out of a moving vehicle.
– Ensure that there is a litter bin in your vehicle so that passengers can dispose of their waste into the bin.
– Once the litter bin is full, it should be emptied into designated points such as street/home litter bins.
– Do not leave waste food containers at lay-byes, instead, use the bins provided or alternatively use your vehicle litter bin.
Public Conveyance Operators
– Ensure that you place a bin inside your bus/commuter omnibus so that passengers can safely dispose of their waste. Statutory Instrument 6 (Environmental Management Effluent and Solid Waste Regulations) of 2007 provides for the prosecution of those found without litter bins in public conveyance vehicle.
– Educate your passengers before taking off on the use of the litter bin and discourage them from throwing litter out of the vehicle.-l Desist from emptying your vehicle litter bins at undesignated sites, especially on the roadside.
– All waste collected in buses and combis should be placed properly in a bin.
– Do not throw litter out of a vehicle. It litters the environment, causes accidents and is also an offence.
Let us celebrate this Easter holiday with a difference. As we travel during this period, let us not litter our roads. To all churches that are gathering to worship, ensure that your premises and surroundings are clean before, during and after the events. The difference you make is real.
How does your church manage waste during public gatherings?
Send your answers using our whatsapp platform; 0779565707 by the 28th of March 2016. Clearly indicate your name, gender, age, contact details and nearest EMA office. You can walk away with an EMA branded hat.