Impact of Galamsey On Attaining The SDG 6 Target
Galamsey and its ill effects on the operation of Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) have been highlighted extensively in the media in recent times. This is a welcome development giving the fact that the impact of galamsey (which is not only the pollution of water bodies but also the diversion of water sources) makes it a lot more difficult for GWCL to access these water sources. Again, it requires a lot more financing by GWCL to treat polluted water to make it safe for its customers.
Looking at it from a global perspective, climate change and its impact on water bodies present a greater challenge that calls for “having our own climate adaptation as a country to some of these things is important”. Mr. Kettey explains the situation further, “If we, as a country, give a lot more adverse impact to these water bodies then we are setting ourselves for other consequences to come in the future because water (no matter the quantity we have) is still a limited resource.” He continues, “And it is important that all stakeholders, led by the Water Resource Commission and the like, work hand in hand with all stakeholders to ensure we protect this resource and this galamsey menace is halted.” I think the approach taken now is the right way to go. We have prohibited, as a country, mining in water bodies and the like. We need to make sure it’s not just stated in policy (because that is not always the problem) but rather how to implement and enforce them.
We have made some progress albeit on a much lower pace in terms of sanitation coverage from what we have attained under the MDG’s from 15% in 2015 to over 23% in overall coverage for sanitation. But we need universal or comprehensive coverage by 2030 that gives you a sense of what we need to cover to be able to achieve the SDG for sanitation.
Digging deeper into the ills of the galamsey menace, Mr. Kettey states, “When you take water pollution in general, besides galamsey there is also the overall water pollution from industrial waste or wastewater in general. And again, as a country, through EPA and other organizations, we have a template/guide on what we need to do to prevent discharging untreated liquid waste into drains and water bodies. Continue Here