Naomi Gabriel —
Some experts on environmental pollution yesterday in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, in a workshop, gathered to discuss how universities can drive a thriving ecosystem for innovations and entrepreneurship on plastic waste.
The workshop tagged ”Circular Plastic Economy Innovation Hub, was held at the Pan African University Life and Earth Sciences Institute (PAULESI), hosted by the University of Ibadan.
Bukola Areo from the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, Oyo State, representing the Commissioner in the ministry, said: “The ministry has taken several giant steps towards managing plastic wastes in the state.
“We have corporate organisations coming up to donate waste bags to the ministry and we also engaged the community and landlord associations by distributing waste bags and encouraging them to sort their wastes from source.
“We have to sort the plastics from organic wastes so that we would be able to recycle it. The ministry also engaged scavengers.”
According to her, recycling is one of the key issues in waste management.
Prof. Titilayo Akinlabi, Director, PAULESI, said that the workshop, was to develop a roadmap to take the whole project forward from the engagement into supporting the various universities.
She said five universities were represented which include: the University of Nigeria Nsukka UNN, Ahmadu Bello University ABU, University of Lagos UNILAG, Obafemi Awolowo University and PAULESI.
“We are going to continue to provide necessary support for them to be able to continue in the research and development and actual production of these equipment that could be used to cover the plastic bottles.
“The plastic bottles are picked from the streets and put into pellets. They would use that to produce filament for 3-D printers,” Akinlabi said.
He said that the equipment that would be used would not be imported from abroad. We are proffering African solutions to African problems. she said.