Environment Ministry chastises APNU for misinforming the public

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[www.inewsguyana.com]The Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment has taken umbrage to the criticisms of the environment by A Partnership for National Unity (APNU).

The APNU last Friday called for the establishment of a national environment strategy and pointed out a number of issues affecting the environment. The Party also called for action to protect the population from hazards, to preserve the environment from further degradation, and to create a sustainable green economy in the shortest time possible.

APNU Leader, David Granger had stated that Guyana’s biggest problems are those of air and water pollution, deforestation, coastal zone conservation, flooding, marine litter, public health, solid waste management and damage to rivers and forests by poorly regulated mining and logging practices.

However, in response, the Environment Ministry in a statement issued on Sunday October 27 stated that the need for a national sectoral environmental strategy was recognized from the inception of the Ministry in December 2011 at which representatives from all related stakeholders including APNU attended.

“Efforts by the MNRE have resulted not only in the formulation of a strategy for the environment, but a broader strategy for the natural resources sectors under its mandate with support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The need for coordination, integration and alignment of the various sectors and the environment is well recognized as the environment cannot be treated in isolation,” the ministry stated.

According to the Environment Ministry, the formulation of the Natural Resources and Environment strategy was a consultative process and involved public consultations at which the representatives of the opposition were present.

The Environment Ministry noted that the APNU has misinformed the public about its positions on environmental sustainability and to obscure its own inefficiency to support the Government’s calls for sustainable development and advancement of a Green Economy.

“Two recent examples: APNU failed to commit and support regulations for the Government proposed Environmental Tax for all plastic receptacles which is a means to tackling the garbage situation in our country; and non-support for major Low Carbon Development projects including the Amaila Hydropower project which will replace more than 95% of fossil fuel for the generation of electricity.”

The Ministry’s statement also listed what actions are being taken to tackle the issues of deforestation, coastal zone conservation, marine litter, public health, solid waste management.

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