The Easter Holiday is around the corner. This period is usually characterised by religious and social gatherings as well as travelling as people will be going for holidays and to see their loved ones, among other reasons.

During this hive of activity, there is need for everyone to spare a thought for the environment, in particular, waste management issues.

The best thing to do this year is to celebrate the holidays in a litter free environment Zero Tolerance to Litter Everyone’s Responsibility. In order to achieve a clean, safe and healthy environment, we need to understand that every one of us has a role to play.

The sustainable management of waste calls for an integrated approach, where everyone participates to make our nation clean and litter free.

Stakeholder participation therefore becomes key in resuscitating the aesthetic value of our once beautiful towns and cities.

This week, we shall however, zero in on a few stakeholders as we look forward to the coming holiday; churches, motorists and public vehicle operators.

What should the Church do?

Church leaders should mainstream environmental issues into their main programs and teachings.

The church can form departments or groups of individuals who assist in the coordination of waste management activities at the church. The responsible individuals should have adequate protective clothing.

When large gatherings churches should ensure they procure enough waste receptacles to be able to sustainably manage their waste.

When advertising, churches should shun the use of posters and flyers as they are a source of litter. They should however go electronic for instance social media, radio, bill boards and television.

Churches can adopt streets which they maintain and provide bins for. This should start from their places of worship and beyond. Remember “Charity begins at home”.

Procurement at the church should be of environmentally friendly products. Consider reusable other than single use products, for instance bottled drinks instead of cans.

Private passenger vehicles
Desist from throwing litter out of a moving vehicle.

Ensure that there is a litter bin in your vehicle so that passengers can dispose of their waste into the bin.

Once the litter bin is full, it should be emptied into designated points such as street/home litter bins.

Do not leave waste food containers at lay-byes, instead, use the bins provided or alternatively use your vehicle litter bin.

Public vehicle operators
Ensure that you place a bin inside your bus/commuter omnibus so that passengers can safely dispose of their waste. Statutory Instrument 6 (Environmental Management Effluent and Solid Waste Regulations) of 2007 provides for the prosecution of those found without litter bins in public conveyance vehicle.

Educate your passengers before taking off on the use of the litter bin and discourage them from throwing litter out of the vehicle.

Desist from emptying your vehicle litter bins at undesignated sites, especially on the roadside.

All waste collected in buses and commuters should be placed properly in a bin.

Do not throw litter out of a vehicle. It pollutes the environment, causes accidents and is also an offence.

Let us celebrate this holiday with a difference. As we travel during this period, let us not litter our roads.

To all churches that are gathering to worship, ensure that your premises and surroundings are clean before, during and after the events. The difference you make is real.

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