To proffer solutions to environmental challenges in Lagos, concerned stakeholders have launched Waste Management Innovation Challenge, where waste management eggheads came out with innovative ways of ending the problem.
This took place at the Japanese External Trade Organization (JETRO) Office, Victoria Island, Lagos,
The co-founder of the initiative, Felix Iziomoh, said the project is designed to solve one of humanity‘s greatest challenges by addressing the environmental problems in the coastal area.
“This is a problem for us as Lagosians and we want to see how we can help those recyclers and entrepreneurs to scale up. Hence, the WMC is to help them to get investors to invest in their business to see how they can build up in solving the problem of waste management,” said Felix.
He said he is optimistic owing to the pitches presented by three presenters each from Nigeria and Japan and one from Norway. “With their presentation, there is hope that waste management as a global challenge would soon end.
The event graced by renowned waste management practitioners and ecosystem activists across the globe was organised to identify at least 20 startups from all corners of the globe that are offering solutions related to waste management.
According to the organisers, the project will start fully in 2022.
On his part, the Chief Executive Officer of Smart and Neat Solutions Ltd, Christogonus Ibe, said the project will go a long way in furthering the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals especially SDG 13, which deals with climate actions, which poor environmental waste has contributed immensely.
He said: “The project will create jobs as well as create wealth for practitioners and the host city. Through this project, Nigeria and Japan can explore their bilateral relationship especially in technology and waste management.
“Considering the high volume of waste Lagos State is generating, the world is now focused on Lagos with the mindset of deploying technology and adopting global best practices in addressing the environmental challenges with the hope of creating employment and also creating wealth for our many unemployed youths.”
Also, the Chief Executive Officer of Linden Japan and co-founder of the initiative, Takanori Tayama, a Japanese, expressed happiness to see the launch of the project come to reality after months of planning.
According to him, “it was good to see waste management and environmental activists addressing the problems of the ecosystem gathered together to address the waste challenges in Lagos”.
He went further to say that he was happy that world acclaimed names in the ecosystem sector management such as Ken Shibusawa, CEO of Shibusawa and Company Inc, Japan also founder, Commons Asset Management and Daniel Chang of startups development support, Amazon, China are participating as keynote speakers in the launch.
The launch, which was both virtual and physical, saw the participation of Pakam Nigeria, which is one of the big names in waste management technology in Nigeria.
In his remarks, the Commissioner of JETRO Lagos Office Takuma Taninami, said the firm was excited to be part of the project, stressing that it will promote bilateral relationship between Japan and Nigeria.
Some of the participating waste management companies include; Empower (Norway), Kudoti (South Africa), Waste Bazaar (Nigeria), Wecyclers (Nigeria), OkwuEco (Nigeria), Aranea (Japan) and Bakture (Japan).