Monday, March 19, 2018 5.30PM / Proshare WebTV
Lagos State, Nigeria's economic capital, West Africa's leading investment hub and Africa's fast rising mega-city is also facing its challenge of effective waste management which is critical to the sustainable development of the city.
At the moment Lagos generates between 13-14,000 tonnes of waste daily, which means for a population of over 16 million people, waste management must be proactive, strategic and dynamic.
Mr. Idowu Salawu, an Environmental consultant and CEO, MacPress Limited in an interview with Proshare WebTV, on January 17, 2018 called for an "Integrated Lagos Waste Management Solution", to give the State a holistic approach in addressing waste management issues.
He began with the landfills and dumpsites where he asserted that Europe had modernized theirs to meet the changes in urbanization.
Salawu observed that Europe had a robust way of segmenting its waste, which Nigeria and cities like Lagos must learn from. He proffered that items like plastic, aluminium are properly seperated to ensure a proper recycling, treatment and disposal process.
The environmentalist asserted that the critical components of generation, storage, transportation and treatment must align to achieve an efficient waste management system in cities like Lagos.
Looking at the Cleaner Lagos Initiative, Salawu believes it should be a win-win situation for all Lagosians with a broad-based participation and effective system in place to drive the waste management value-chain.
He highlighted the fact that Lagos needs more transfer stations to enable a seamless transportation of waste across the city.
Salawu raised concerns that the current Olusosun Dumpsite that has been decommissioned was over-stretched because it received 80% of the waste produced in Lagos, and should have since been closed due to its proximity to business and residential areas.
In making a strong case for an "Integrated Lagos Waste Management Solution" Salawu harped on the need to develop strategic landfills with close proximity to waste generation points in the State.
On the role of Visionscape in driving the Cleaner Lagos Initiative, he expressed concern over the capacity of the company to deliver, even asking if it had carried out a thorough feasibility study of the State before embarking on the waste management delivery.
With an "Integrated Waste Management Solution in Lagos", Salawu believes there are immense business opportunities, that could have positive effects on the economy.
According to him Europe has a $9bn waste management industry, and in Lagos it is an opportunity for engaging people from the scavengers, waste truck drivers to even the waste process managers.
He gave an illustration that with over 100 Private Sector Partnership (PSP) operators involved in the waste management process in Lagos, each employ at least 4 people which makes it already 400 employed workers, alongside thousands of scavengers.
As a practitioner in the Industry, he asserts that an "Integrated Waste Management Solution in Lagos" will boost revenue for the government, attract more investments into waste management and achieve an efficient waste management ecosystem in Lagos.