An Italian firm, Management Environmental Finance (MEFIN), has expressed interest in establishing wastes recycling plant in Calabar with an investment package totaling 40 million Euros.
Disclosing this during a presentation at the conference room of the governor’s office, Calabar, leader of the Italian delegation, Mr. Chinedu Okpalama, disclosed that the pilot project in Nigeria for the treatment of municipal solid waste, recycling of raw materials and retrieval of energy in the state will gulp 40million Euros to be invested by the Italian the firm with no funding from Cross River government.
His words: “It will cost Cross River nothing to install the plant as the company is committed to using the state as its pilot for the establishment of the plant in Nigeria and it is going to invest 40million Euros,” adding that,” once this is done, Cross River will be the hub for environmentally treated waste.”
Okpalama said: “The proposed facility will have the capacity to treat 500,000 tonnes per year of municipal solid waste which when fully built, the plant will run for 7920 hours per year as well as produce 4.2mw of energy per hour.”
The team leader also pointed out that the plant will among other benefits, “provide over 700 direct jobs from collection to energy generation and an extra 1500 indirect jobs from commercial activities associated with the operations of the plant.”
Continuing, Okpalama expressed worry that 70 percent of wastes generated in the country are either dumped or burnt, a situation which threatens life and environment, hence the need for MEFIN to recycle 100 percent of every waste collected.
According to him, “If we establish the plant in Cross River, we intend to manage everything that concerns wastes and turn it to a resource so that every individual in the state will now see wastes as a resource.”
He added that “any aspect of the wastes that cannot be degraded like metals will be used in the production of electricity while the final products from the decomposition of the metals could also be used for construction work.”
Okpalama who hinted that the firm intends to bring in 100 specialised trucks for waste collection if the project is given a nod, also appealed for a land mass of 100 hectares for the plant, for waste collection and management by MEFIN.
Responding, Cross River Governor, Prof Ben Ayade, said: “I wish you well. Our state is very smart enough to know when a thing is fake, this one is good and your choice for Cross River for the pilot project is apt.”
Ayade, who directed the commissioners for Power, Lands, and Environment to fast-track the processes for the take-off of the project, assured the firm that “we are ready to release 100 hectares of land to you.”