LASG partners Netherlands backed COY on establishment of e-waste smelter plant

The Lagos State Government has signed a Letter of Intent with a company from the Netherlands for the establishment of a smelter plant in Lagos.

Speaking during the signing ceremony at Alausa, the Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr Tokunbo Wahab, who signed on behalf of the state, said it is about improving the economy of Lagos.

Wahab said that when the smelter plant comes on stream, it would create new jobs and also create a new economy through the conversion of e-waste into valuable products.

According to him, the presence of the Consul General of the Netherlands affirms a vote of confidence on the company “Close the Loop BV” about its capabilities.

He described electronic waste as a major waste that people usually don’t talk about.

He added that the with the latest step taken by Lagos, the state is far ahead of some states and countries in the Sub region in terms of taking care of electronic waste and converting them to wealth.

He explained that many people do not have the proper awareness on how to dispose either the electronic products they use or the waste from e-products.

He added that that lack of awareness of proper disposal of e-waste leads to the risk of pollution and the dangers it poses to human health.

He said that the improper management of e-waste can affect the environment badly.

The commissioner said that in most cases the e-waste ends up on the landfills, incinerated and eventually exported to the developing countries for recycling.

“Before now, what usually happens to our electronic waste? Government put them together, ship them out, reconvert them to value, bring them in to sell to the people again” he said.

He said that Lagos generates 13 thousand tonnes of waste daily, adding that one third goes to waste to wealth, another one third to electronic waste and last part goes to energy.

He urged residents to take ownership of the infrastructure in their environment.

“Don’t dispose waste into the drainage system. You are the ones paying the tax, so the government provide infrastructure from the taxes you pay.

As a good citizen you must always say something when the need arises,” Wahab said.

Also speaking, Special Adviser on Environment, Mr. Rotimi Akodu expressed the readiness of the Lagos team to collaborate on building a sustainable environment.

Akodu said that the “Close the Loop BV” officials seemed poised for the job at hand.

“We have a lot of waste in place that we don’t know what to do with them, but now is the time.

“We just worked on the conversion of waste to wealth.

We have also signed the conversion of waste to energy and now we are taking care of our electronic wastes.

” I am sure that no state imagined that it is possible. It is something we welcome and ready to partner with you” Akodu said.

The Netherlands Consul-General in Nigeria Mr. Michel Deleen gave kudos to the Lagos state government in its response to environmental challenges.

He cited the example of the heavy rainfall experienced on Wednesday and observed that the flash flood that accompanied it disappeared after a few hours of the rain stopping.

“The truth is most developed countries with infrastructure in place still experience flash flood when it rains incessantly, “he said

He emphasized that the Netherlands government is set to collaborate with Lagos to turn waste into value and extract valuable wastes as well .

.Also speaking, the President Confederation of Netherlands Industry and Employers, Ingrid Thijssen expressed delight at the partnership, adding that it will benefit both parties tremendously.

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