Green Gold (Ghana edition)
In a modern world where populations are expanding into simultaneously shrinking global resources, it is almost inevitable that innovation and necessity will merge to produce very alternatives. In simple English, it is sometimes in our most turbulent moments that we find our centre.
We have spent the past several generations drooling over black gold (crude oil) and it is running out. Yet our green gold (renewable energy), that can actually earn us more, just sits there; and we cannot see the forest for the trees.
The world is now running out of fuel and energy options. Options that were the ‘boldest and baddest’, but not the best, and we all know the morale to that story.
Now, all of a sudden, it seems, we must go natural, sustainable, green, environmentally-conscious, eco-friendly … AGAIN, because it is not a new thing. It was THE thing, before we decided we looked better being ‘bold and bad’.
But perhaps, all this hoop-la about depleting resources is good, because it brings us full circle back to the basics. It pushes those amongst us who can, to go eco-friendly, and this is exactly what some of the Tertiary Institutions in Ghana have commenced now.
I mean, think about it: Legon currently has about 25,000 people on its campus, Ashesi about 500, Central about 2000.
Every day, each of these 30,000 people goes to the lavatory at least thrice and flushes litres of water and human waste down the drain; baths with litres of water which goes into the sewers; drinks litres of water, generates bags of plastic, paper, glass, and food waste. Daily.
Where does all this waste water and matter go? All the rubbish thrown away? Multiply all this waste by 30,000 people, then by 300 days out of the year. All that waste under the ground? Does it really all “go”?
So Legon now has a large-scale biogas and waste-water recycling facility at its Jubilee Hostels site, to convert the human waste into cooking and electrifiying gas/energy as well as recycled water for the lawns, etc.
Ashesi University, though, has gone ‘one better’ in terms of the eco-focused architecture, landscaping, layout, and sustainable water purification system of their new location in Berekuso.
Aaaw, Ghana’s very own Ivy League of Green Universities. Colour me shy.
Patrick Awuah, Founder of Ashesi, said, “When you hire a graduate, you are not just hiring a pair of hands; you are hiring a brain.”
In my green-infested mind, what better brain to hire, than one which has also been educated in the essence and ethics of protecting the primary sustenance of all other life forms; what better entities amongst us to begin this trend, than the very ones that educate us and prepare us for the future?
Go on, tell me. I’ll wait.
Written by Golda Addo (@GHANAmomoni)