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Experts decry pollution at Olusosun dumpsite

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Environmentalists have decried the emission of thick smokes from the Olusosun dumpsite since Wednesday, saying, it has a dangerous effects on humans and the ecosystem.

The environmentalists, who spoke to The Guardian on the implications of the emission, said the dumpsite should have been closed since when development was nearing the site.

According to the former Director -General of Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF), Adeniyi Karunwi, Olusosun dumpsite was at the outskirt of Lagos when it was acquired but now that development is close to it, it has constituted a health hazard not even to talk of the fire incident and the thick emission.

He stressed that the siting of the dumpsite constitute a grievous danger to residents, hence the unexplained deaths especially with absence of adequate health facilities.

The environmental expert urged the Lagos state government to ensure that the fire is put off and the thick smoke stopped to check the rising cases of cardiovascular ailment in the society.

Also another environmentalist, Dr Olumide Ayayi, who runs a health care environment organisation in Gbagada area of the state, said it was insensitive on the part of Lagos state government to leave the dumpsite in such a despicable state without considering the health implications and impacts on the state’s aesthetics

According to him, in saner climes, the residents and environmentalists would have gone to court to press for charges against the government for the environmental hazard.

Ajayi, therefore, called for immediate action on the part of the authority to arrest emission to save the citizenry from developing eyes problem and further pollution on the environment.

But a senior consultant, to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Prof. Emmanuel Oladipo, said the fire could be as a result of methane gas, which could be harnessed for domestic uses.

The Earth’s atmospheric methane concentration has increased by about 150 percent since 1750, and it accounts for 20percent of the total radiative forcing from all of the long-lived and globally mixed greenhouse gases

What is required, he said, is for the Lagos state government to provide data of waste, which has been buried for a long time at the dumpsite in order to determine the quantity of methane gas present in the soul.

Oladipo, a professor at the University of Lagos also said , this could be positively harvested as done in Korea and other advanced countries for domestic uses.

Tracing the history of the Olusosun landfill, Oladipo said , the landfill was not properly laid out from the beginning as it was created when Julius Berger Construction was constructing of the Lagos –Ibadan expressway.

Meanwhile , Lagos State Government has directed residents within the community to relocate temporarily for health safety purposes and prevention of environmental hazards.

Director-General, Lagos State Safety Commission, Hakeem Dickson, stressed that the advice became necessary following the smoke that had continued to billow from the dumpsite, enveloping the community, including the toll-gate end of Lagos-Ibadan expressway.

He added that the other option on relocation for residents was to shut their windows, vents and stay indoors until the smoke subsides.


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