Some Journalists have received training from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on how to report on environmental related issues. The three days training took place at The Institute of Environmental Studies (IES) at Amasaman in the Ga West Municipal Assembly. The event was the second phase of a three-day training on Responsive and Persuasive Environmental Reporting and its related activities.
The training was to equip the journalists to be well informed to be able to generate compact and accurate stories on the Environment.
The EPA took the journalists through topics such as the EPA acts, The EPA Quality Standards, Chemicals Management, Plastic Waste, Ozone Climate change, Petroleum, Natural resources among others.
Speaking at the training, the Ag. Executive Director of EPA, Mr John Pwamang, bemoaned the minimal number of journalists who focus on environmental related stories. He said that there seem to be a disconnect between scientists working within the Environmental world and journalist adding that the training therefore seeks to improve the knowledge and awareness of journalists on Environmental issues and also on EPA’s mandate as stewards and managers of Ghana’s Environment.
He stated that the EPA seek to collaborate with the public and the media to curb Environmental related issues adding that the collaboration with the media is needed more since the agency can only set out rules and supervise them but frequent education from the media and other stakeholders is what can make the agency succeed.
Some of the journalists spoke about the lack of understanding of concepts and terminologies used by most Scientists to discuss issues and the lack of frequent training in skills to convert scientific information presented by Environmental scientists and experts for the average Ghanaian.
Mr. Pwamang said it is for this excuse which is often given by the journalists that is why the EPA has decided to equip the journalists with the needed skills through training.
Speaking on the environmental quality standards in Ghana, the head of Environmental Quality Department of EPA, Mr Emmanuel Appoh, said the agency had designed new environmental quality standards in line with international protocols to ensure consumer safety and public health.
“We have come out with standards for ambient air quality and stationary emissions and also guidelines for measurement of noise,” he said.
Mr Appoh also stated that the EPA was developing regulations on motor vehicles emissions and ambient noise control to be presented to the Attorney General in order to draft a fresh bill for enactment.