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Let's have a national policy on climate change-Quayson   
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The Government has been urged to move quickly on the development of a national policy on climate change to mitigate its damaging effects on lives and property.

The 1992 Constitution imposes a duty on the Government and every Ghanaian to protect and safeguard the environment and its ecosystem to ensure a healthy environment as a basic human right and a necessary condition for healthy life.

Mr. Richard Quayson, Deputy Commissioner, Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) was speaking at an environmental forum held to mark the International Human Rights Day at the Adventist Girls Senior High School, Ntonso in the Kwabre District on Thursday.

Agency for Health and Food Security, a local Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), organized the event to highlight the need to protect the environment, draw attention to the dangers of its continued degradation and to discuss ways to address the problem of climate change.

More than 1,000 participants made up of representatives of governmental and non-governmental organizations, students, and civil society attended.

The theme was: "Responding positively to the environmental call for survival aid, a responsibility for all and a prerequisite to the entitlement of the right to a clean enabling environment

Mr. Quayson counselled Ghanaians to be more responsible and careful in their actions, particularly where uncertainty exists about the effects of such human activities on life and the environment.

Mr. Kofi Opoku Manu, The Ashanti Regional Minister, in a speech read for him, expressed concern about the rate of destruction of the country's forest cover.

The Regional Minister called for the protection of the environment to mitigate the effects of climate change and enhance food security and reduction of poverty.

Dr. Charles Antwi-Boasiako, Lecturer, Faculty of Renewable Natural Resources, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), said one of the most positive global developments in recent times has been the growing awareness of the importance of nature.

He called on all to join hands to safeguard the environment for both the present and future generations.

Mr. Kwaku Asante, a Director of the NGO, said they have planted 2,000 "Voacanga Africana" and 500 citrus.

Additionally, it has trained 120 volunteers to raise and establish tree seedlings in readiness for the one-million trees a year project, each for Ghana and La Cote D'Ivoire beginning, 2010.

Ghana's forest coverage has reduced from the total of 8.6 million hectares in 1990 to present 1.2 million hectares.
Source: GNA

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