Tanzania Breweries Ltd has emerged the winner of the first ever regional award to celebrate industries that have reduced environmental pollution along the Lake Victoria Basin.
The company beat 40 other competitors from Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya to scoop the coveted overall winner of the Regional Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production Awards, which also recognised firms that embraced cheaper methods of industrial production that lead to the cutting down on resource waste.
Uganda’s Crown Beverages Ltd emerged the first runners- up while Kibos Sugar and Allied Industries from Kisumu, Kenya emerged third overall.
The companies were ranked based on how they had effectively managed their solid waste, waste use and energy.
The awards ceremony held in Entebbe, Uganda, last week were organised by the Kenya Cleaner Production Centre that runs a $3.5 million funded World Bank programme meant to save the Lake Victoria Basin from pollution from industries.
The theme of the awards was “Creating Wealth without Waste and Doing More with Less.”
The awards covered four categories: Energy efficiency, waste water management, water use reduction and materials efficiency.
Kenya’s Nzoia Sugar Company Ltd won in the solid waste management award, while Tanzania Breweries Ltd won the water management award.
The winner of the wastewater management award was Kibos Sugar & Allied Industries Ltd while the energy management trophy was won by Tanzania Breweries Ltd.
Kitumbe Tea Factory from Kericho won the special recognition award for its innovative ways to reduce pollution.
Uganda Minister of State for Environment Flavia Munaaba Nabugere said it was prudent for industries along the Lake Victoria Basin to embrace cleaner production technologies since the freshwater lake supported livelihoods of millions of people in East Africa.
Embrace new system
“This is to be done within a context of high material, water and energy efficiencies and negligible environmental impact,” she said of the efforts to save the lake that supports a third of the East African countries’ population.
The minister noted that some of the 195 companies that had been trained and embraced Cleaner Production in the region no longer discharged any polluted effluent into the water bodies and were able to treat and reuse all of it.
Regional RECP co-ordinator Jane Nyakang’o called on more industries to embrace resource efficient and cleaner production programmes, noting that there had been massive gains for those already in the project.
She said under the programme, industries have invested $79 million in cleaner technologies across Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda with annual savings being $15 million.
The award came at a time when the costs of water, energy and raw materials have escalated while Lake Victoria is getting more polluted.