The National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency, NESREA, has said that the implementation of Extended Producer Responsibility, EPR, programme would create job opportunities in the country.
The Director-General of the agency, Lawrence Anukam, stated this in Abuja on Tuesday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN.
Mr. Anukam said that the agency was collaborating with relevant stakeholders for an effective implementation of the programme. He explained that EPR was a strategy designed to promote the integration of environmental costs associated with goods throughout their life cycles into the market price of the products.
According to him, the implementation of the programme would also tackle other environmental-related problems. “Government is looking for positive ways to reduce waste as it has a link with climate change and the way to make it possible is through a strong implementation of the EPR programme. “I strongly believe that the implementation of the programme will reduce waste, create employment opportunities, promote the nation`s economy and integrity,” he said.
He also said that EPR was a stewardship policy approach that makes consumer goods companies responsible for managing their products and packaging when consumers are finished with them. He added that with EPR, manufacturers would have incentives to design their products to use fewer materials, less toxics and recycle them at the end of their useful life. He opined that the essence of EPR was to change what were formerly wastes into food for industry and the next generation of products.
The director-general elucidated that EPR could create a feedback circle by making manufacturers responsible for collecting, re-using, and re-cycling their products and packaging. He added that EPR would reduce energy use, air and global warming pollution, adding that the programme was a form of industry-led recycling.
“A research has demonstrated that recycling create jobs and economic development. “It is working for other countries; I believe it will also work for Nigeria.’’ He urged manufacturers, dealers, importers and all the relevant stakeholders involved in the implementation of the EPR to abide by the guidelines of the programme.
Anukam, however, assured that the government would give the necessary support for the smooth running of the programme. NAN reports that the Federal Government is expected to launch the programme in the first quarter of 2017.
This article was originally published by The Premium Times in January, 2017.