January 11, 2011

Ghana EPA Launches Environmental Performance Rating Disclosure Programme

Filed under: Africa — Tags: , — inece @ 9:56 pm

On 25 November 2010, an Environmental Performance Rating Disclosure (EPRD) Programme was launched after five years of work between the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and mining and manufacturing companies. The first disclosure covered 11 mining and 49 manufacturing companies.

The EPRD is dubbed the AKOBEN Programme, which won a poster session at IAIA09. AKOBEN is a local Adinkra symbol which stands for vigilance and wariness. It also signifies alertness and readiness to serve a good cause. The program is an initiative of the Ghana EPA to assess performance of companies to ensure compliance with environmental standards and implementation of commitments made in the environmental impact statements (EIS) and EIA follow-up. It uses a five-color rating scheme —  gold, green, blue, orange, and red — which indicate environmental performance ranging from excellent to poor.

The programme uses seven criteria: legal requirements; hazardous toxic waste on-site management, spills and accidents; compliance with environmental quality standards (toxic and non-toxic and noise pollution); environmental monitoring and reporting; best practices environmental management; complaints management and community relations; and corporate social responsibility.

The launch was performed on behalf of the Vice President, Mr. John Dramani  Mahama, by Ms. Victoria Addy, a Member of the Council of State who stated: ”we must ensure that our economic move does not happen at the cost of environmental degradation that will deprive our future generations of environmental and natural resource assets.”

The Minister of Environment, Science and Technology, Ms. Sherry Ayittey,  said “the aim of the ratings is to encourage companies to adopt prudent environment management practices in their operations and combat environment pollution in the country.”

For details, see http://www.epaghanaakoben.org/.

Article submitted by Jonathan Allotey, Executive Director, Environmental Protection Agency, Ghana.

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