Dangote Industries’ commitment to sustainable environment irrevocable —Pathak

Photo shows L-R: Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Ade O Adebayo, from Onikan Police Station, Lagos; Dangote Industries Limited (DIL) Acting Group Chief HSSE & Sustainability, James Adenuga; Group Head, Sustainability, Dangote Cement Plc, Dr. Igazeuma Okoroba; Group Managing Director/CEO, Dangote Cement Plc, Arvind Pathak and Deputy Director Climate Change & Environment Planning, Bankole Michael; representative of Lagos State Commissioner of Environment, Tokunbo Wahab, at the Dangote Sustainable Living Fair in Lagos

Dangote Industries Limited has reiterated its commitment to sustainable environment in all the communities where its business units operate by prioritizing the use of natural and renewable resources.

The company said as a leading business organization, it was educating the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) on driving positive change and foster more ways of sustainable production and consumption to drive a better society conducive to economic development.

Group Managing Director of Dangote Cement Plc, Arvind Pathak, made these remarks while speaking during Sustainable Living Fair, a discussion and exhibition programme held in Lagos, October 24, 2023, as part of activities marking this year’s Sustainability Week, themed: “Sustainable Production and Consumption – The Dangote Way.”

He said that the Dangote Cement Sustainability Week is a yearly tradition of positively impacting our host communities, through employee volunteering, across our Nigerian and Pan African plants, as well as all Dangote business units.

Pathak explained that "the journey to sustainability at Dangote Cement, officially commenced in 2017 with the adoption of a Dangote Group wide seven Sustainability Pillars; cultural, economic, operational, social, environmental, financial and institutional, in every aspect of our business operations."

According to him, since the inauguration of the Dangote Cement Sustainability Week in 2018, employee volunteers have increased by 73 per cent, “a testament to our vibrant sustainability culture. This year, one of the activities earmarked for the commemoration of our sustainability week this year is the flagship Dangote Sustainable Living Fair, which is aimed at showcasing the various components of a sustainable lifestyle.

"At the fair, members of our host communities, visitors as well and employees can learn to prioritize the use of natural and renewable resources. Exhibitors are provided with an avenue to exhibit their goods, educate, and proffer, alternatives to consumers thereby, creating a win-win situation.”

The Dangote Cement boss also commended the administration of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu for its committment to good governance, which has been demonstrated by the various environmental initiatives embarked upon by the Lagos State Ministry of Environment and Water Resources. 

He urged all stakeholders present to partake in the various educative sessions and activities, patronise the exhibitors, network with other sustainability enthusiasts and “transfer the knowledge gained back to your various organisations and homes for implementation.”

In his own remark, Head, Learning & Development, Dangote Cement, Nurudeen Yusuf stated that "in a world faced with pressing environmental challenges, it is imperative that we come together to address the urgent need for sustainable production and consumption."

He said: "today, we have a unique opportunity to witness the innovative solutions, groundbreaking technologies, and inspiring initiatives that are paving the way towards a more sustainable and equitable world.

"This exhibition serves as a powerful platform for knowledge exchange, collaboration, and inspiration. Here, we have the privilege of engaging with passionate individuals, organizations, and businesses that are leading the way in sustainable practices.”

Lagos State Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Tokunbo Wahab, who was represented by the Deputy Director, Climate Change and Environmental Planning in the ministry, Mr. Bankole Michael, urged the public to be self-discipline in waste disposal, saying that "if we do not dispose our waste properly, it will find its way back into the environment and cause havoc on habitants."

He pointed out that "if we live in a sustainable manner, we do not have to clear the drainage. Drainage is not a waste receptacle. There are PSP operators as far back as 2003 in Lagos state, whereby the PSP goes to houses to pick the waste but yet some people still dispose their waste in improper places."

He noted that government spends so much money on cleaning the environment due to the unwholesome practices by some people and that such resources could have been spent on health and education, if the environment is not debased, while emphasizing that "all we need to do is to make sure that we all live responsibly and sustainably."

Select members of the management of the company as well as other stakeholders from host communities, including the Nigeria Police Force, dissected issues of climate change, global warming and the circular economy, which is technically referred to as Dangcircular in Dangote Group and efforts in place by the company to meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

The discussants canvassed some practical strategies and initiatives that individuals and communities can adopt to reduce the negative impact of climate change in their everyday lives. 

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