A five-day intensive training course for refrigeration technicians in
The training, which has drawn over 30 participants from different refrigeration workshops in the capital, was organised by the National Environment Agency (NEA).
In his opening remarks, the Programme Officer for Ozone Depleting Substances, Dawda Badjie, said there is a need for a holistic local effort in saving the ozone layer from depletion. He said the world being a global village, the contribution from refrigeration technicians would contribute immensely in reducing the emission rate of Chloro Fluoro Carbons (CFC's) one of the deadly chemicals that depletes the ozone layer.
Mr. Badjie explained the importance of the ozone layer is the role it plays in reducing the harmful ultra-violet rays from the sun reaching the earth's surface which, he said, have a great impact on both plant and animal life, not to mention the aquatic and marine life.
The ozone layer provides a protection shield for plant and animal life from the ultraviolet radiation, which can be particularly harmful to all living organisms. These include increased skin cancer, eye cataracts, blindness, suppressed human immune system, damage to natural ecosystems and adverse impact on climate change.
According to him, this training course for refrigeration technicians is one of the series to be conducted in all the regions towards meeting The Gambia's international obligations in phasing out the consumption and production of Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) by 2010.
He disclosed that throughout the country over 120 technicians have been trained in refrigeration techniques, refrigeration handling, retrofitting, recovering and recycling. He added that over 80 Custom officials and other security personnel (Police, Immigration, NIA and phytosanitary) have been trained and provided with substance identifiers to monitor and control ODS at different ports of entry.
He then called on the participants to adopt the good practices learnt during the training and spread the knowledge to others.
According to Mr. Abdul Aziz Mboge, a Senior Lecturer at the GTTI, who is the course trainer, refrigeration technicians are targeted because Chloro Fluoro Carbons, which are the main source of ODS in The Gambia are found in refrigerators, air conditioners, foams and aerosols.