The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), has described the Volta Regional capital Ho, as Oxygen City of Ghana for attaining the highest Air Quality Index (AQI) level compared to other places across the country.
The Ho Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), Mr Devine Bosson, who disclosed this to the Ghanaian Times here, said Ho recorded 26 AQI against Kintampo in the Bono Region with 76 AQI, Mamponten in the Ashanti Region 77 AQI while Accra recorded 79 AQI all on that same day.
Giving the EPA’s breakdown, Mr Bosson said the AQI were measured from good to unhealthy based on the index grading from 0-500, explaining that from 0-50 good air quality while 51-100 meant moderate quality and 151-200, meant unhealthy air.
“So you can see that the AQI as a yardstick the higher the grading, the greater the level of air pollution and greater the health concern,” he said.
The nickname, Mr Bosson was born out of the result of an outcome of a report by the Regional Environmental Directorate which measured the air quality of the town and concluded that it was one of the lowest in terms of pollution.
“It was there we decided to use the name “Oxygen City” to also brand our city as having an eco-friendly weather conditions in Ghana,” he said.
According to him, after the designation, conscious efforts were put in place to reduce air pollution and promote eco-friendly greener city, an urban environment aimed at improving air quality in and around Ho.
Mr Bosson said some of the proactive measures put in place to ensure the sustenance of maintaining air purity were the enforcement of the bye-laws on indiscriminate burning of bushes, the activities of metal scavengers in and around the city proper waste management system.
He said that one of the strategies which had impacted on the sustainability of reducing environmental pollution was making the indigenes own the concept of environmental stewardship with the town folks having to do their part.
“I believed the concept has taken roots here and we are on course to again create eco-friendly public transport system with less pollution from carbon dioxide emissions,” he said.
Mr Bosson said the municipality has encouraged the use of tricycles, motors as preferred choice for the public transport system for their cost effectiveness and low environment pollution.
He said the little achievement gained through collaborative interventions would be sustained so that Ho would continue to enjoy the limelight of being tourists’ destination for those who want to rejuvenate the physical wellbeing with “pure” air and environmental serenity.
He said the nickname would be officially out-doored in the near future after the Independence anniversary being hosted by Ho, the “Oxygen City.”
With, Ho coming on board, christened, Oxygen City, it has joined other cities in Ghana such as Garden City, (Kumasi), Twin City (Sekondi-Takoradi) Harbour City (Tema) and Koforidua Flowers (Koforidua).