Ghanaian Minister proposes Fund to manage environment

Sherry Ayittey - Minister of Environment, Science and Technology

Ms Sherry Ayittey, the Minister of Environment, Science and Technology, on Tuesday called for the establishment of an environmental management fund to rebuild the loss of biodiversity and ecosystem.

She said money from the fund could be channeled into tree plantation, river preservation, water harvesting and re-forestation for sustained and ecological improvement.

Ms. Ayittey made the call at the celebration of the 46th World Environment Day in Sunyani. It was on the theme “greening our economy for sustained environment”.

The World Environment Day (WED) was instituted by the United Nations (UN) in 1972 and marked on June 5 every year to highlight the need for a paradigm shift towards a more sustainable environment.

Ms. Ayittey said in the short term the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development could set aside a percentage of the District Assemblies Common Fund for the establishment of the environment fund.

She said the assemblies would manage the fund themselves by setting up committees that would ensure that the fund was being used for the intended purposes.

Ms. Ayittey touched on the global theme of the WED “greening economy: does it include you” and said it was possible to achieve rapid economic growth without destroying the environment.

Ms. Ayittey said Ghana was gradually reaching planetary limits, not just in terms of greenhouse gas emissions but also in the use of water, land, forests and other natural resources.

It is therefore prudent that the fundamentals of economic growth and development in terms of production of goods and services as well as consumer habits be guided by this concept of green economy, she stated.

Ms. Ruby Sandhu-Rojon, UN Resident Coordinator, said it was unfortunate that the expansion of cocoa production in Ghana had contributed to the fragmentation of forest landscapes, loss of wildlife corridors and forest connectivity and degradation of biodiversity.

She said one of the consequences of deforestation, which had significantly affected Ghana’s cocoa production, was the loss of major soil nutrients and added that Ghana urgently needed to promote and provide incentives for a more environmentally sound cocoa production, such as use of greater shade.

She said the UN agencies were coming together, with funding support from the Netherlands government, to support Ghana’s transition to a green economy and a climate resilient society within the broader goal of poverty reduction.

Technical advisory and financial support will be provided to assist Ghana in convening national dialogues on green economy and identify links to pro-poor inclusive growth, Ms. Sandhu-Rojon said.

Mr. Kwadwo Nyamekye-Marfo Brong-Ahafo Regional Minister in a speech read for him, said the government had demonstrated its commitment to the forest plantation development project and in the region a total of 2,682 acres of degraded area was put under the programme.

He said at the end of 2011, 1,794.6 of the targeted areas at Kintampo, Atebubu, Dormaa, Sunyani, Bechem and Goaso had been planted with seedlings.

The Ministry organised a tree planting exercise at Nsoatre and Abesim as part of activities to mark the day and 2,000 citrus seeds and 1,000 mango seedlings were  planted.

Source: GNA

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.