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Accra City Engulf With Filth

As a step towards protecting marine life and aqua culture, the Women’s International Shipping and Trading Association (WISTA), in collaboration with the Ghana Maritime Authority on Tuesday organised a clean-up exercise in Accra.

The exercise, undertaken along the shores of the “Afia Beach”, was to clear the ocean of waste especially plastic, which has become food for marine life including fishes, whales and dolphins, thereby killing many of them.

Business24

Mrs Jemilat Jawulaa Mahamah, the President of WISTA, addressing participants of the exercise, said the ocean was an engine for sustainable development for the world’s population.

This, she said, was because it covered a wide and diverse range of opportunities for fishery, oil and gas, maritime transport, marine eco touring, aqua culture, and ship building.

However, the ocean is faced with a number of challenges, with the biggest of them being pollution from ships and land-based sources such as human activities.

Mrs Mahamah said according to the UN Environmental Programme, up to 12 .7 million metric tonnes of plastic finds its way into the ocean every year and 17.6 billion tonnes of waste are found in the sea every year.

She said the ability of marine life to find food and increase their species level impacted on their immunity and ability to reproduce, therefore, feeding on plastic reduces their reproductive abilities.

“As part of the Global Maritime Community, we have a responsibility to be conscious of the effects of man’s activities to our oceans and the time for actions to save our environment from pollution is now,” she said.

She proposed that single use plastics be banned and recycling of plastics be promoted to enable the country to overcome ocean plastic pollution.

“Now fishermen are not able to catch 50 per cent of the quantity of fishes they were catching 10 to 15 years ago because the sea is filled plastics, clothes, shoes, bags, and others,” he said.

Mrs Mahamah advised the public to desist from indiscriminately throwing away rubbish especially plastic waste, as rain washed them into water bodies, thereby causing damage to marine life.

The clean-up exercise was organised with support from Zoomlion Ghana Limited, Greater Accra Regional Fish Mongers Association, and Ladies in Shippers Authority.

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