As part of efforts to stem the tide of the global climate change crisis, Bi-Courtney Aviation Services Limited (BASL), in partnership with the Food and Beverage Recycling Alliance of Nigeria (FBRAN), has launched an innovative waste recycling programme at the Murtala Muhammed Airport Terminal Two, Ikeja, Lagos.
FBRAN, a representation of an industry coalition with 29 member companies, was formed by four multi-nationals, namely the Nigerian Bottling Company, Nestle Plc, Nigerian Breweries, and 7-Up Bottling Company.
The body has a subsisting partnership with the Lagos State Waste Management Authority, Ogun State Waste Management Authority and Abuja Municipal Waste Management Authority, as well as international partners like United Nations Development Organization and World Bank. The synergy is for climate change mitigation and prevention through reduction of plastic waste pollution, among others.
In statement signed by Oluwatosin Onalaja, BASL’s Head of Corporate Communications, it was said that the project, which was launched recently, is an attempt to smartly manage and sort the over 1,000kg of waste generated by the over 10,000 users of the airport terminal daily (including passengers, vendors, shoppers, and employees), and convert it into wealth.
Speaking at the event, Ms. Duncan, BASL’s Acting Chief Operating Officer, said the Green Project Launch at the MMA2 terminal was part of the organization’s compliance measures to tackle the global crisis of climate change and its resultant harmful effects.
Ms. Duncan said that with the development, MMA2 is now strategically positioned to contribute to the global campaign against plastic pollution and its harmful impacts on humans and the environment.
She said: “MMA2, in collaboration with FBRAN, goes Green. That means we are at the beginning of the right type of collaboration that provides sustainability in crucial areas like the environment and our relationship with it. Incidentally, the environment is the mirror of our personality and values. It reflects who we are and how we treat ourselves. Whatever we put into it, it brings back to us.
“Therefore, this is an important alliance to prevent famine, dirt, or exposure to any health hazards that can be posed by unacceptable wastes. And it is going to take a lot more collaboration and awareness to drive this type of campaign round all the nooks and crannies of society, for a better environment and the safety of the people,” she added.
Buttressing the Acting COO’s submissions, Mrs. Nafisat Adeniran, BASL’s Head of Safety, said their extensive sensitization programme on proper Waste Disposal and Management at the terminal would be followed with strict compliance enforcement. She explained that the feasibility study preceding the project launch featured an inspection of the terminal to understand the type, quantity and source of waste being generated and the best approach to control it.
“As an environmentalist, I believe that most of the global catastrophes today are primarily caused by our poor and harmful relationship with the environment, part of which are attributable to poor management of our waste. As this is sorted, we will see its positive impact on the environment. This was what informed the project and the donation of the recycling bins today by FBRAN and my dear friend, Agharese Onaghise marking the take-off of the go-green project at MMA2 a reality,” Mrs. Adeniran added.
In her presentation, Ms. Agharese Onaghise, the Executive Secretary of FBRAN, who said the Green Project Launch at MMA2 was the first of its kind in any Airport Terminal in Nigeria, noted that the project has the potential to contribute to health and air travel safety measures in the terminal.
Onaghise explained that the initiative was to ensure that waste is separated from source, for efficient management, reusability and prevention of health hazards that could arise from improper disposal.
According to her, other benefits accruable from effectively managed waste include the prevention of harmful gaseous discharges, foul and discomforting smells, and untidiness of the environment, which creates reputational crises for organizations.
“As you all know, climate change has attained the status of global emergency. And one of the factors responsible for this is the improper management of waste. That is what informed this partnership with BASL: to manage the waste being generated from this airport terminal; to ensure that MMA2 is green-compliant and environmentally friendly, which is a global best practice.
“Interestingly, we believe that this initiative will help drive the campaign against plastic pollution, as most of the solid wastes observed in Lagos State are reusable plastic materials.
“For any project to be sustainable, it needs to have economic value, besides the environmental or socio value. In this case, properly separated waste is valuable. The part that has reusable items can be sold to collection partners. And on this project, our collection partner is West African Energy. They will come and pick up sorted waste and give an incentive to the host. And I believe that no matter how little it may be, the terminal can also use that to fund environmental initiatives that would be beneficial to the overall corporate objective of the organization”.
Soliciting more partnership with organizations on prevention and mitigating factors against plastic pollution and other harmful practices to the environment, the Executive Secretary of FBRAN called for more collaborations “to ensure that we can effectively mitigate climate change and plastic pollution in our country.
“With the climate change crisis designated as a global emergency, it was laudable to see BASL embracing the recommended compliance to the globally adopted mitigating factors against the crisis,” she added.
The Janitorial partners were also present at the event, as well as the food vendors (KFC, Indomie Cafe, Chicken Republic, etc.) who are the largest generators of waste in the terminal. “They have all been adequately trained to take on the task of properly utilizing the new recycling bins,” Adeniran stated.