By Mercy Omoike
Lagos, Aug. 10, 2020 An environmentalist, Mr Adewole Taiwo, on Monday called for government’s support for the adoption and use of eco-friendly products and materials in the country.
Taiwo, the Executive Director, Recyclepoints told newsmen in Lagos that adopting eco-friendly products and materials would stem the growing plastic pollution in Nigeria.
He said that government at all levels should support the adoption of eco-friendly products and materials by practising what they preach not by just paying lip service to the issues.
“In Lagos for instance, the Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA) and the State Ministry of Environment have stopped the use of single-use plastics and encourage eco-friendly products.
“However, the adoption will take a gradual process.
“There are many government policies in place already that support recycling and alternative use products,’’ he said.
The environmentalist noted that the adoption of eco-friendly products was long overdue, “if plastic pollution problems in the environment are to be controlled’’.
Taiwo stressed the need to tackle plastic pollution, saying that the alternative eco-friendly products should be made cheaper and readily available.
He suggested that the government should give producers of eco-friendly products tax holidays and subsidies amongst other incentives.
“The adoption of eco-friendly products and materials for everyday use, is very feasible.
“Before now, everyone was using glass bottles with the return scheme, when plastics came, we adopted it and everyone now carries PET bottles when they buy drinks or water,’’ Taiwo told NAN.
He also spoke on the need to sensitise Nigerians on the benefits of eco-friendly products and materials.
In addition, he said that if these products are made affordable, it would be easier for Nigerians to accept them over plastic products.
“The sensitisation of Nigerians on the benefits of eco-friendly products in mitigating effects of climate change should go hand in hand with the adoption campaigns.
“We can sensitise Nigerians on the adoption of eco-friendly products by showcasing the available eco-friendly friendly products and letting people see reasons for the patronage with basic environmental information.
“While pushing for the adoption of the products and the campaign against plastics, we should also push to make the products more affordable.
“The issue with the adoption of eco-friendly materials and products is the affordability.
“It is not affordable in comparison to the non-eco-friendly materials and products.
“Once the alternative is cheaper and available, people will easily adopt it and discard the use of plastics.’’