The Chiefs and people of Awudome-Avenui, a farming community in the Ho West District of the Volta region have jointly pledged their readiness to support the Ho Oxygen City Project.
The Oxygen City project is the brainchild of the Ho Municipal Assembly and its partners including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with the drive to protect the environment from degradation and destruction.
They pledged to avoid bush burning, which was identified as one major factor that posed serious threat to the project and plant more trees as their support and contribution to the project’s success.
The Chiefs and the people made the pledge during a launch of an anti-bushfire campaign in the community by the Volta Regional Directorate of the EPA.
Togbe Dzagah, Regent of the community, who deputised for Togbe Adzesi VI, Paramount Chief of the Area, told the Ghana News Agency that it was the duty of people to ensure safety and protection of the environment.
He said safety of the environment devoid of pollution would promote good health, “so as a community we would do their best to stop bush burning and plant more trees to improve the quality of air.”
Mama Gbeklui Akordeke IV, Queen of Awudome-Avenui, said the Oxygen Project must be seen as a revival of the people’s responsibility towards the environment and that other Municipalities and Districts should to replicate this project to ensure safe air.
Mr Hope Smith Lomotey, Volta Regional Director of EPA, said bush burning was one key factor negatively influencing the Oxygen City Project, requiring conscious efforts to address it.
He said the launch of the anti-bushfire campaign formed part of the Agency’s project dubbed “No Burning Community Project” to be piloted in four communities to curtail the bush burning menace.
The Director said the No Burning Community Project was in alignment with the Ho Oxygen City Project and aimed at encouraging communities to avoid bush burning to improve and sustain quality air.
Mr Lomotey said the project would also involve planting of trees to serve as carbon sink to absorb polluted air from the atmosphere to enhance the health of the people.
He said the Agency currently had stored six monitoring stations to assess the air quality in the Ho Municipality and in the adjoining districts including Ho West, Adaklu and Afadjato South.
The Director appealed to the chiefs and people to carry the message to other communities and educate them, urging communities in the region to join the campaign and embrace the project.
A total of five million trees including mahogany, teak, acacia are expected to be planted as part of the No Burning Community Project.
Meanwhile, 500 trees were planted during the launch.
Mr Charles Anyomi, Focal Person for the Awudome-Avenui anti-bushefire campaign thanked the Agency for choosing the community for the launch and urged the members of the community to heed to the advice of the EPA.