By Shadrack Nyakoe
Stern action will be taken against environmental polluters in Nairobi as the county government tightens the noose.
Governor Ann Kananu on Tuesday said Nairobi is key to the fight against climate change and will not allow pollution to occur under her watch.
“Climate change is a major threat to Kenya’s socio-economic wellbeing. It has the potential to roll back the development gains made over the years, and threatens the attainment of our Vision 2030 and President Kenyatta’s Big Four Agenda,’’ said Kananu.
She spoke at Charter Hall during the launch of the Nairobi City Climate Action Plan for 2020-2050, aimed at curbing pollution.
Nairobi becomes the first county in Kenya to develop such a plan that aims to offer wider benefits to citizens, improve livelihoods and health, and create green jobs.
The plan will also help restore parks and open spaces, improve mobility options for residents, enhance air quality management, and embrace clean energy options.
Kananu has said the ambitious plan complements and aligns with the updated Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) for Kenya to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 32 percent by 2030.
The governor directed enforcement agencies led by the County Environment Department, Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) and the National Environment Management Authority to crack down on industrial factories that are notorious for polluting the environment despite several warnings.
“We are going to take stern action against the factories that are polluting the environment especially those in the Industrial area around Mombasa Road. We have already received complaints from residents and area leaders about the cases and I can assure you that action will be taken to end the pollution of our environment,” warned Kananu.
She further directed the County Environment CEC Larry Wambua to release a report on the crackdown to ensure all residents and institutions comply with the Nairobi City Climate Action Plan for 2020-2050.
NMS Director General Lt General Mohammed Badi hailed the plan and pledged to fully support its implementation.
“This is a great move and we as NMS are also insisting on the waste to energy project that we are implementing to stop the pollution of environment,” Badi said.
Wambua said the plan will help the city fight air pollution and environmental degradation.
The event was also attended by NEMA Regional Director Stella Kamwasir, other environment management stakeholders and South B Member of County Assembly Waithera Chege who initiated the Nairobi City County Air Quality Act 2021.
MCA Chege implored upon Governor Kananu to ensure the new Act is fully implemented together with the new Climate Action Plan.
“I’m appealing to the Governor to be tough on air polluters especially along Mombasa road where we already have reported cases of factories polluting our air,” she said.