CCCFS Commends Gov't Over Ban On Salvage and Overage Cars
The Centre for Climate Change and Food Security (CCCFS) notes with joy government's decision to place a ban on the importation of 10-year-old and salvage vehicles. Government's intention is contained in the Customs (Amendment) Bill, 2020 which seeks to amend the Customs Act, 2015 (Act 891) which parliament has reportedly, adopted and approved.
Our joy stems from the fact that the decision by government, has mitigation effects on climate change. Considering the Paris Accord of 2016, which envisages keeping the surge in global temperature well below 2° C, we deem government's decision a huge leap forward towards the realization of the Accord.
Overaged cars have higher CO2 emission rates than new ones. The transport sector, contributes more than 50% of CO2 in terms of energy consumption globally. This makes it important for something radical to be done to change the trend. For this reason, the affinity for electric cars, is growing in the advanced countries. Government must thus take a cue and carve out a long term plan, for energy efficiency in the transport sector including but not limited to, target for electric cars. A comprehensive transport policy must be drawn, making the issue of climate change cardinal going forward.
Our joy is however, marred by the fact that, government in considering the overwhelming benefits of such a ban, did not make climate change issues elemental to the discussion. It appears, the overarching consideration for the law, was to create space in Ghana, for foreign automobile industries. The failure of government to make climate change a central issue, undermines government's true commitment to the fight against climate change. If government had communicated climate change as one of the issues topical to this decision, it would have served as an awareness creation avenue on the issue of climate change, which over 60% of Ghanaians hardly are aware of. CCCFS © doesn't however, consider this lapse as a fatal injury in terms of the envisaged effect of the ban.
By way of education, it's important to mention that, the fight against climate change, have seen a push back globally because of the economic implications of policies that can reverse the climate change trends. Many countries have declined to change some fundamentals of their economies as a commitment to the scourge of climate change.
This is to say, that, although government's decision has economic consequences especially on the livelihoods of the many Ghanaians who deal in these types of vehicles, it's our considered opinion that, the long term benefits are weightier. In this respect, we call on government to find ways to integrate these Ghanaians whose jobs are threatened as a result of this commendable policy, into the overall policy in a way that does not take away their livelihoods.
We acknowledge this first step by government, as an important step and ask for more to be done.
Alexander Nti Kani
Director of Research