In a bold move aimed at addressing environmental concerns, the Lagos State Government has swiftly implemented a ban on the use of single-use plastics and Styrofoam packs, commonly referred to as ‘takeaways.’
The announcement was made by Tokunbo Wahab, the Commissioner of Environment and Water Resources, in a statement released on Sunday.
Wahab highlighted the adverse impact of these materials on the environment, noting that drainage channels in the state were consistently clogged due to the indiscriminate distribution and usage of Styrofoam and other plastics.
“The State Government cannot stand idly by while its environment, particularly in a coastal city, continues to be desecrated,” emphasized the Commissioner.
To enforce the ban, the Commissioner has directed the Lagos Waste Management Authority and the Kick Against Indiscipline to immediately take action. These agencies are tasked with clamping down on production companies and distribution outlets for Styrofoam, preventing further distribution.
Producers, distributors, and end-users of Styrofoam packs were sternly advised to adhere to the ban or face severe consequences, including heavy fines and the potential sealing of their premises.
Wahab urged consumers and residents to embrace sustainable practices by boycotting Styrofoam packs and single-use plastics. He encouraged the use of reusable food containers and water bottles as eco-friendly alternatives.
Earlier reports had highlighted Lagos State’s ongoing struggle with plastic pollution, despite efforts to address the issue and leverage a $2 billion recycling industry in Nigeria. The state produces a staggering 870,000 tonnes of plastic garbage annually, underscoring the persistent challenge of plastic pollution.
In a related development, the Center for Earth Works, a non-governmental organization, had previously raised concerns about the indiscriminate use and disposal of plastic materials in Nigeria. They called for an end to plastic pollution in the country, emphasizing the need for collective action to tackle this environmental menace.