NEWS

Government Will Set Up Environment Council in 2016

Government will set up a National Environment Council in January to police littering and look into environmental issues in the country. Minister for Local Government, Housing, Environment, Infrastructure and Transport
15 Nov 2015 11:55
Government Will Set Up  Environment Council in 2016
Sigatoka Chamber of Commerce and Industry member Jiten Billmoria, Minister for Local Government, Housing, Environment, Infrastructure and Transport Parveen Kumar and Divisional Senior Environmental Officer Sanivasa Waqaraimasi during the closing of the Environment Compliance Campaign at the Shalini Apartments in Olosara, Sigatoka yesterday. Photo: WAISEA NASOKIA

Government will set up a National Environment Council in January to police littering and look into environmental issues in the country.

Minister for Local Government, Housing, Environment, Infrastructure and Transport Parveen Kumar revealed this while closing the Environment Compliance Campaign workshop at Olosara, Sigatoka, yesterday.

“There is a provision under the Environment Act that will come into effect from January 2016,” Mr Kumar said.

“From Government’s perspective, this is essential to provide a level playing field for individuals who run business and that the law of this land is applied fairly to everyone,” he said.

“There is a lot more work that we all still need to achieve and this cannot be handled by my ministry alone – it requires assistance and supports.¬”

He said the council would enforce the Name and Shame Campaign launched a few months ago against those littering.

“We had a low profile in this regard as we did not jump into it. We wanted to see how people react. We have received 65 cases, yet we have not published or given the identity, but come January, 2016, these names will be exposed.

“We mean business. There is no point in spending thousands of dollars in sending officers to collect rubbish and there are few who are still involved. This should be stopped, but there are some lazy people who create dumping sites like this.”

He urged the 30 workshop participants to co-ordinate and execute efforts to address compliance to environmental legislation to ensure that streets, towns and highways are litter free.

“We must take pride in our country, ensure that we look after it, but most importantly officials should ensure that we continue to advise our citizens on our collective responsibility,” he said.

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