The Kogi Government has built a mini-plastic recycling plant at Felele, Lokoja, to manage the huge plastic waste in the state.
The state Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources, Mr Sanusi Yahaya, made the disclosure at a news conference in Lokoja.
The conference was part of activities to mark the 2018 World Environment Day with the theme: “Beat Plastic Pollution”.
According to the commissioner, when the plant is commissioned, it will encourage waste recycling, especially plastic materials, and create employment opportunities directly and indirectly through value chain.
“It is hoped that the general public will embrace the right attitude to reduce indiscriminate dumping of plastic materials in the environment, to help the government to achieve its goals,” Yahaya said.
He said that poor management of plastics waste at all levels had affected the land, water bodies, atmosphere and habitats.
According to him, pollution occurs when plastic waste impairs the natural environment and negatively creates problems for plants, wildlife, structures and humans.
Yahaya urged Kogi people to complement the state government’s efforts in environmental protection by disposing their plastic and other solid wastes at the designated places for easy evacuation to the dumpsites for proper management.
He said that the government had involved the private sector in waste management to improve public health and environmental quality through effective partnership.
“The ministry has been able to level heaps of refuse across the 21 local councils; it purchased various sizes of sanitary dustbins in 2016 to keep the environment clean.
“The ministry has also, through sustainable health education, increased sensitisation on the importance of environmental sanitation, using traditional means of communication such as town criers and jingles.
“We have removed illegal structures on roadsides, cleared weeds on road medians in Lokoja metropolis, and cleaned gutters especially in flood-prone areas at intervals,” Yahaya said.
Other activities done to mark the Day include road walk to create awareness, and picking and gathering of plastic wastes disposed indiscriminately, and planting of trees.