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Ban plastic bags – Australian High C’ssner advises gov’t

Australian High Commissioner to Ghana, Andrew Barnes, has advised the Akufo-Addo led government to ban the use of plastic bags as part of efforts to help make Accra the cleanest city in Africa by 2020.

The High Commissioner whose tweet about filth in the country went viral in an interview with Accra based radio station, suggested that Ghana should learn from other countries that have banned plastic bags and find a more sustainable way of packaging.

He said: “I think people are starting to realise that they can’t just sit around and go on in the old ways, they can’t keep buying and consuming plastics and just throwing it away. There have got to be proper regulations and structures in place and improvement in rubbish collection systems and then waste disposal, recycling and probably the most obvious one is the ban on plastic bags.

“Rwanda has done it, Kenya has done it, Morocco has done it, the Scandinavian countries have done it, it’s happening across Australia in many states and the single use of plastic bags is a rubbish idea. People have got to move on; people have got to find more sustainable ways of packaging and shopping,” he said.

Official figures estimate that only two per cent of the about 22,000 tonnes of plastic waste generated yearly in Ghana, is recycled.

The remaining 98 per cent is sent to landfill sites by waste management companies. Some of that find their way into drains, water bodies and the streets.

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