By Hafsa Obeng, GNA
Accra, May 5, GNA – The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in collaboration with Greener Impact International (GII), has organised a day’s training workshop for 60 teachers from selected basic schools within the Amasaman Municipality.
The training, which is a pilot focuses on how to use the Pan African Conservation Education (PACE) resource package to teach environmental education in schools.
The PACE contains simple practical solutions to environmental problems in communities. Participating teachers would in turn train other teachers in their respective schools on the use of the PACE resources Package.
Mr Antwi-Boasiako Amoah of the Energy Resources and Climate Change Department, EPA speaking on climate change, trends and impacts in Ghana, said teachers had a distinctly unique stake in the fight against climate change.
He said climate change was a monumental challenge, but one that we could not afford to shy away from.
"Climate change" is a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.
Globally, the objective for fighting climate change is to achieve stabilization of greenhouse gas concentration in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.
Mr Antwi-Boasiako said greenhouse gases was the main contributor to climate change, because the earth’s atmosphere acted much like a giant greenhouse, which allowed solar radiation (heat) to pass through the atmosphere but, after it was absorbed and re-radiated by the earth, the gases prevent this heat from escaping back into space.
He said evidence of climate change was increasingly gaining scientific grounds, and its impacts and vulnerabilities in Ghana was generally influenced by geographical spread, gender, poverty levels, livelihoods, access to information, among others.
Climate change, Mr Antwi- Boasiako added, affected most sectors of the individual life, including, education, water supply, energy, health, food production and supply among others.
He said there must be a collective effort by stakeholders including individuals to help reduce its effects, thus putting pressure and engaging with policy makers, engaging in durbars focusing on climate change and environment, working in communities with local politicians, joining youth groups on climate change and environment, participating in public consultations on environmental issues, and conducting projects on climate change in schools could help.
Mr Godson Cudjoe
Voado, EPA, said waste included all items that people no longer had any use
for, which they either intended to get rid off or have already discarded, and
could come in either liquid or solid form.
He said some problems associated with indiscriminate waste disposal included choking of drains, littering of landscape and the beaches, pollution of water bodies and beaches, and served as breeding medium for harmful organisms such as mosquitoes, flies and rodents.
He said waste in the country could be managed through recycling, reuse, recovering and reducing waste drastically.
“We can manage our waste through waste minimization, maximizing environmentally sound waste reuse and recycling, promoting environmentally sound waste disposal and treatment, and developing regulations to support waste reduction, re-use, recycling and recovery through alternative uses through appropriate technologies and incentives.”
Mr Kassim Gawusu-Toure, Executive Director, GII said GII was focused on climate change education, clean energy development, sustainable development among others.
He said the
training would provide simple and practical solutions that could address
environmental problems, build the capacity of teachers to enhance environmental
education in the basic schools.
Mr Ebenezer Appah-Sampong,
Deputy Executive Director, Technical, lauded the collaboration, expressing the
hope that, the engagement would be a sustained one.
He said the EPA was currently in a discussion with the Ministry of Education to introduce the issue of climate change into the curricula.
He urged participants to identify ways of increasing awareness leveraging the social media space.
Mr Appah-Sampong assured that the session would be followed up with the necessary projects to bring about the desired change, saying the EPA would continue to support efforts at putting education on the environment first.
Mr Samuel Quaye, EPA said the workshop, which falls in line with the Environmental Education Department of the EPA’s annual activity plan, is to equip teachers at the basic level with the knowledge and tools for teaching Environmental Education.
He said it was also to train the teachers on the use of the PACE Resource Package, and promote the integration of environmental education into teaching and learning at the basic school level.
Participating schools received copies of The Environmental Education for Basic Schools, teachers source books as well as copies of the PACE resources package.