Experts at a two-days capacity workshop on Climate Change organized by WaterAid Ghana, an international Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) operating in the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) sector have urged government to inculcate Climate Change adoption agenda in every policy and programs it initiate.
According to them, issues of Climate Change should be tackled by government as well as the citizenarary with the utmost urgency requires now than before.
Taken participants through overview of climate change and impacts in Ghana, a Research Fellow at the Legon Centre for Climate Change and Sustainability, Dr. Robert Manteaw, said the effects of climate change are been felt everywhere.
According to him, the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic has exposed the world to the dare consequence of climate change.
He explained that the effects of the pandemics like COVID-19 is being felt globally with attendant climate change challenges, including sanitation and hygiene issues, calling for effective communication skills at the local level to bring behavioural changes that would prevent the spread of the disease.
He said the environment was becoming more vulnerable to the effects of climate change in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic and advised for lessons to be picked by the uncertainties wrought by the disease on human society.
“We need to be prepared to communicate well, especially on issues of climate change. Covid has taught us a lot. There’s no need to wait till something happens before we tackle issues of climate change,” he said.
On the seriousness of the effects of climate change, Dr Manteaw said the situation in Ghana was as serious as elsewhere in the world.
“If people don’t see the effects of climate change, ask them about the rainfall, weather changes in the rural areas.
“We used to have the vultures on the refuse dumps in the cities. Have you asked where the vultures are?” Dr Manteaw asked.
Dr. Manteaw asked communicators to excite their audiences about the subject of climate change and advised investors to take advantage of business opportunities emerging out of the issue and tap into its economic benefits.
The Deputy Director, Climate Change, of the Environmental Protection Agency, Dr. Antwi-Bosiako Amoah, in his presentation advocated for more resources in the area of climate change and environmental issues.
He explained that even though there are lots of policy documents on climate change, implementation has been identified to be one of the challenges against tackling Climate Change.
Dr. Antwi-Boasiako Amoh has therefore called on government to make the needed investments to ensure once policy documents are rolled out, they can be implemented to get needed results.
“There was a shortfall. The shortfall was the fact that implementation on the ground was lacking and therefore it gives us a message as a country that once we churn out some of these documents we need to make a conscious effort to actually get them implemented,” he said.
The Deputy Director, Climate Change, of the Environmental Protection Agency, said climate change issues had been incorporated in the curriculum of basic schools and junior high schools would soon have theirs.
He took participants through Ghana’s Action on Climate Change, the National Climate Change Policy and Ghana’s National Determined Condition on Climate Change.
The Acting Country Director of WaterAid Ghana, Mr. Jesse Coffie Danku, speaking to the media after the workshop disclosed that his outfit organised the workshop with the aim to incorporate knowledge on water, sanitation and hygiene issues (WASH), which are a key public health issue and how well these could be tackled by government, institutions and individuals as the challenges of climate change rage on water security.
Mr. Danku hinted that the outcome of the workshop was expected to help in communicating WASH issues to push for action at all levels.
It is a known fact that across the globe, affordable and sustainable access to WASH is a key public health issue within international development and is the focus of the first two targets of Sustainable Development Goal-Six (SDG 6) hence every single effort should be made to address issues treating water security.
Story: Franklin ASARE-DONKOH
Writer’s email: firstname.lastname@example.org