Companies identified by the National Environment Management Authority (Nema) as significant polluters of the Nairobi River have agreed to follow restoration orders issued by the authority to clean specific sites along the river.

Nema officials met with representatives of Producer Responsibility Organisations (PROs) on Wednesday in response to the publication of 29 companies whose products and packaging were found polluting the Nairobi River and were given 30 days to restore it.

This action came after Nema officers conducted inspections at various points within the Nairobi River catchment on January 18.

The directive from Nema follows the companies’ failure to comply with extended producer responsibility as per the provisions of the Sustainable Waste Management Act 2022.

It was agreed during the meeting that Nema will continue inspections and issue restoration orders to producers whose products and packaging are found in Kenyan rivers.

The four PROs present in the meeting were the Packaging Producer Responsibility Organisation (PAKPRO), Kenya Extended Producer Responsibility Organisation (KEPRO), Kenya Hazardous Waste Producer Responsible (KEHAPRO), and EPROK.

During discussions, PROs stated that their members were willing to cooperate with Nema to implement EPR and comply with restoration orders to clean identified sites along the Nairobi River.

PROs negotiated with Nema not to publish the names of their members on Nema’s social media, citing investment in the implementation of their EPR obligations through their respective PROs.

Nema agreed to publish names of companies whose products and packaging are found in the river and who are not members of a PRO or do not have individual EPR schemes.

PROs will share with Nema the names of producers who have fully paid their EPR fees to the PRO.

Enforcement action will be taken by Nema against producers who fail to comply with restoration orders, according to the resolution after deliberations.

PROs will also assist producers in complying with Nema restoration orders.

The Sustainable Waste Management Act 2022, enacted on July 6, 2022, has provisions for extended producer responsibility, holding producers responsible for environmental pollution, a change from the past when the public was solely held responsible for littering.

Leave a Reply