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05.06.2004 General News

Minister calls for support to protect the Environment

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Accra, June 5, GNA- Professor Kasim Kasanga, Minister of Environment and Science on Saturday called for a coordinated support from civil society, traditional rulers, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and the private sector to address issues pertaining to the environment.

"We need technical and financial support to promote environmentally sound technologies and strengthen institutions for implementing environmental programmes," he said.

He was speaking at the World Environment Day celebrations, which was marked with coconut tree planting programmes at Sakumono beach area, led by Prof. Barima Azumah Nelson, the boxing legend.

The day had the theme, " Wanted! Seas and Oceans -Dead of Alive?" The theme, Prof. Kasanga noted, was meant to convey a message of urgency about the state of the world's marine and coastal resources and the quest for sustainable development.

He said Ghana's coastal zone represented only 6.7 per cent of the total area of the country, but was however home to 25 per cent of the nation's population.

He noted that of all the problems identified in the marine and coastal zones of Ghana were poor domestic sanitation and industrial pollution adding, that the major degradation were local sewage pollution, uncontrolled sand winning, fishing and the accumulation of waste generated from various sources.

"We have also destroyed almost all the coconut trees along our beaches thus denying us of the rich tourism potential," Prof. Kasanga said adding, "we need to join hands in making Ghana a cleaner and safer place to live in".

More than 500 coconut seedlings were planted by government officials, civil society organisations and school children.