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President Mahama Launches Two National Policy Documents

Two national policy documents—the National Climate Change Policy (NCCP) and the National Environment Policy— have been launched.

The policy documents, formulated by the  Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI), form part of the pragmatic and systematic effort by government to ensure a climate-resilient and climate-compatible economy,

Both policies have been designed to provide strategic directions and also co-ordinate issues of climate change in Ghana as well as help the country achieve  sustainable development through equitable low carbon economic growth.
The NCCP, however, prioritises five main policy areas which include agriculture and food security, disaster preparedness and response, natural resource management, equitable social development and energy, and industrial and infrastructural development.

In an address to launch the documents in Accra, yesterday, the President of the Republic of Ghana, H. E. John Dramani Mahama, said the NCCP was Ghana’s integrated response to climate change that had been prepared and designed within the context of national sustainable development priorities.

President Mahama expressed concern about the effects of climate change on water bodies, lives and properties, and the unpredictability of the weather pattern with negative effects on agriculture, bringing along with it extreme hardship to the people.

He said the NCCP, therefore, came as a useful tool that provided a clearly-defined pathway for dealing with the challenges of climate change within the current socio-economic context of Ghana.

President Mahama expressed hope that Ghana’s participation in international conferences on climate change would help fight the canker and its associated issues, adding that he looked ahead to the opportunities and benefits of a green economy.

For his part, the sector Minister, Hon. Akwasi Oppong-Fosu, explained that the policy aimed to raise the awareness of decision-makers on the management of climate change impacts backed by timely and relevant information and also to create a policy framework for climate-resilient and low-carbon economic growth that was compatible with, and integrated into, the Ghana Shared Growth and Development Agenda and the National Budget setting process.

Hon. Oppong-Fosu noted that government was keen to explore the effects of climate change and also ensure that the development agenda of the country responded to emerging trends of global warming.

He added that responsibility for implementing the various components set out in the policy lay with the various Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA’s), who would work in partnership with each other and with civil society and the business community.

In his remarks, the President of the National House of Chiefs and Chairman for the occasion, Naa Professor Nabila, noted that multimillion-dollar roads, food and lives were being destroyed due to climate change and that it was imperative that steps were taken to mitigate its effects.
Naa Professor Nabila, therefore, called for the use of more cost-effective energy technologies to reduce green house effects.

He was optimistic that the launch of the policies would ensure that the country was in tune with emerging global trends in environmental management and climate change.

Source: ISD (Mabel Addo)