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Forestry Department Impounds 6 Trucks Laden with Charcoal, 2 Carrying Timber

The Ministry of Green Economy and Environment, in collaboration with the Forestry Department, Zambia Police Service, and COMACO, conducted a thorough inspection along Mumbwa Road.

This operation resulted in the impoundment of six trucks transporting charcoal and two trucks carrying timber.

The initiative, led by Minister of Green Economy and Environment, Hon. Eng. Collins Nzovu MP, alongside Permanent Secretary Dr. Douty Chibamba, Forestry Department Director Mr. Sitwala Wamunyima, and various officials, aimed to assess compliance levels regarding the charcoal ban.

Following the operation, Minister Nzovu commended some traders for adhering to the ban, evidenced by a reduction in charcoal-laden trucks on Mumbwa Road.

However, he expressed concern over reports of continued issuance of permits for charcoal production, despite the ban.

Minister Nzovu issued a stern warning to forestry officers found violating the ban, emphasizing that disciplinary action would be taken against those non-compliant individuals.

He stressed the severity of penalties, including fines up to K15,000, confiscation of charcoal, and subsequent auctioning of the confiscated goods.

Highlighting the importance of the ban, Minister Nzovu emphasized that charcoal production exacerbates deforestation, contributing to the ongoing energy deficit and environmental degradation.

He urged citizens to explore alternative energy sources such as Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG) and solar power, emphasizing their safety, affordability, and sustainability.

The Ministry reiterated its commitment to enforcing the ban rigorously, with continued on-spot inspections and increased penalties to deter future violations.

Confiscated charcoal will be subject to fines, and the possibility of auctioning vessels carrying charcoal is being explored as an additional deterrent measure.

As Zambia strives for sustainable environmental practices and energy solutions, Minister Nzovu urged collective compliance with the ban on charcoal production, underscoring the imperative of embracing alternative energy sources for a greener, more prosperous future.

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