Youth have been urged to take advantage of waste management solutions as the new frontier of job and wealth creation and sustainable economic growth. This was during the High-Level Panel on Waste Management and Circular Economy, which is part of the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) Corporate Social Investment (CSI) Week 2019.
The KAM 2019 CSI focuses on waste management and entrepreneurial innovations that foster sustainability. It draws stakeholders from government, academia, industry and development partners.
Speaking during the forum, National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA) Chief Compliance Officer Dr Anne Omambia noted that there are immense opportunities in waste management that remain untapped which the youth can take advantage of.
“Despite its tremendous opportunities, waste management remains largely untapped. The youth should take advantage of this and fill this gap. The future belongs to those who have innovative solutions to waste management,” said Dr Omambia.
Also at the event, Mr. Jacob Ferdinand, Green Growth Counsellor, Danish Embassy, Nairobi noted that young people have a key role to play in enabling sustainable waste management and circular economy.
“The Technical University of Denmark chose to partner with Kenya because of the research work going on in the country, and the efforts being made by industry to promote effective waste management,” said Mr Ferdinand.
On the other hand, KAM Vice-Chair Mr Mucai Kunyiha noted that youth have a crucial role in the global conversation on promoting sustainable waste management.
“In our commitment to a cleaner Kenya, KAM is involving all stakeholders in the development of an inclusive and sustainable industrial sector through waste management. We are cognizant of the role that youth play in driving Kenya’s economic growth. This is why we continue to create awareness on the value of waste and promote sustainable waste management solutions to address the challenge in the country, added Mr Mucai.
He also announced that The Kenya Plastics Action Plan will be launched in October to promote an enabling circular economy for the environmentally sustainable use and recycling of plastics in Kenya.
“With inclusive and broad-based stakeholder engagement, policy recommendations that shall catalyze a circular economy in Kenya and reduction of environmental pollution and establishing circular economy financing mechanisms – the Action Plan is an industry vision to achieve economic sustainability“ added Mr Kunyiha.
The KAM CSI 2019 also included the Youth Sustainability Conference and the #SafishaMtaa Clean Up to mark World Clean-Up Day 2019.