As the World Environment Day is celebrated globally, Murang'a residents have been urged to join hands in conserving the environment. The World Environment Day took place in Kenol town and started with a thorough clean-up of the town, followed by a tree planting activity at the Kenol Police Station compound. Speaking during the celebrations, Murang'a County Director of Environment, Sarah Waruo, noted that efforts to mitigate plastic pollution in line with the Waste Management Act were making notable strides and that concerted efforts by all the stakeholders were paramount. 'In 2017, the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) banned the use of plastic bags, but we can see they are slowly creeping back into our daily engagements,' she said. The director noted that since it is a collective responsibility, there is a need to join hands and stick to the alternative provided, as the plastics cause irreparable damage to the environment. 'Let us beat plastic pollution, as every human being has the right to live in a healthy environment,' she stated. Waruo cautioned that plastic materials downgrade the environment as they slowly seep into the oceans, soils, and forests, causing irreparable damage. The Chief Executive (CECM) for Environment, Ms Mary Magochi, underscored the need to segregate waste and called on both private and public entities to join in the movement and reduce plastic pollution by ensuring they use materials that can be recycled. 'Let us embrace the sustainable waste management practices by reducing and avoiding the amount of single-use plastic products and increasing the amount recycled at the same time,' she noted. She also stated that embracing sustainable waste management will lessen the impact the waste has on the environment, thus improving air and water quality and subsequently restoring the ecosystem. 'Let us follow the five waste management strategies of Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Repurpose and Recycle, this will greatly contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to combat the looming climate disaster,' she added. Murang'a South Deputy County Commissioner (DCC), Gitonga Murungi, on behalf of the County Commissioner, observed that the government has put environment conservation at the forefront in the fight against global warming. 'As such, let us join hands in mitigating the effects by restoring the ecosystem through increasing the forest cover, like the way the government is doing through the national tree growing campaign, to increase the forest cover from 10 to 30 percent,' said the DCC. He noted that within the last quarter, the National Government Administration Officers (NGAO) have overseen 307,969 trees grown with a survival rate of 3 percent in Murang'a County. 'Therefore, let us all participate in that exercise by growing more trees so as to mitigate the effects of climate change like loss of life, property, biodiversity, and even resources,' he added. World Environment Day was established by the UN General Assembly (UNGA) 50 years ago to commemorate and call attention to the ongoing negative effects of climate change and global warming. The 50th global celebrations were part of the campaign to beat plastic pollution under the theme of ecosystem restoration.
Source: Kenya News Agency