June 10, 2021

McCarthy Hill Residents Protest New Cement Factory

RESIDENTS OF McCarthy Hill in the Weija Gbawe Municipality have registered their displeasure at the construction of a cement factory near Panbros Salt Industries Ltd, where salt is mined.

Eddie Quaynor, President of the McCarthy Hill Residents Association, who disclosed this to the media at a press conference recently, said the association was preparing to go to court for an injunction to stop the new cement factory if authorities do not stop the construction of the factory.

Mr. Quaynor informed the media that several petitions have been sent to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), yet nothing has been done to stop construction works at the factory – Empire Cement – at South McCarthy Hill off the main road leading to Weija.

According to Mr. Quaynor, residents at McCarthy Hill, Tetegu, Mallam, Gbawe, and Weija were only fighting against any health hazards to be created for them in the future now.

“We want to have a peaceful and serene environment, free of constant cement dust particles in the air as the wind direction blows over the cement factory area in the direction of the catchment areas mentioned,” he said.

Mr. Quaynor observed that even more worrying was the fact that the site of the cement factory was sited next to Panbros Salt Industries Ltd., the oldest and largest wholly-Ghanaian owned salt company that produced quality salt for the whole country and the West African sub-region.

Mr. Quaynor said the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had confirmed in its correspondence to Empire Cement that edible salt and a cement factory do not mix, and that the two land-uses were mutually exclusive and must be completely separated.

He said the factory owners had disregarded several warnings from the EPA to cease operations and instead were working day and night to speed up the construction of the factory and that they had installed three aluminum silos so far and were excavating and filling up the low-lying areas.

He said McCarthy Hill residents supported the ‘One District, One Factory’ concept of government and would welcome the creation of jobs in Ghana, with good initiatives for building factories according to well thought out land-use planning and law, which would protect the safety and health of residents.

He said their major concern was that the factory was being built even though there was no preliminary approval from the EPA, the statutory body in charge of assessing, granting approval, and monitoring such factories that negatively impact the environment.

Mr. Quaynor said cement factories by their nature were classified under heavy industry, as it generated heavy-duty air pollution that required sitting in heavy industrial areas, away from heavily populated or densely residential areas.

The president said the afore-stated production processes pointed to heavy industry, which must be in a heavy industrial zone, away from the densely populated residential areas mentioned.

Mr. Quaynor said the cement particles resulting from bagging 40,000 metric tons of cement per month were a major environmental concern to the health of residents at McCarthy Hill and its environs.

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Source: dailyguidenetwork.com

 

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