An environment advocacy group, the Ghana Youth Environmental Movement (GYEM) has marked Earth Day by calling on the government to reconsider its decision to invest in a coal fired power plant.
The group took to the streets of Osu in Accra to campaign against the supposed government project and also tasked it to consider clean energy and renewable energy such as solar rather than the coal fired plants which had health and environment related implications.
According to the group’s leader, Gideon Mensah Commey, the level of air and water pollution associated with the operation of coal raised lots of public concerns about the project, especially the environmental and public health risks it stood to bring on vulnerable communities.
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The group said the project also defeated the appointment of President John Mahama as the Co-Chair of a group of sixteen influential global figures to support the UN in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Plans are far advanced for the government of Ghana to construct a 2x350MW coal fired power plant in August 2016 at Ekumfi Aboano in the Central Region which will see the importation of between 1,800,000 tonnes and 2,050,000 tonnes per year of coal from South Africa.
The project is a joint venture between the Volta River Authority (VRA) and the Shenzhen Group of China which would see a future expansion to a 2000MW plant in four years at a cost of US$1.5 billion.