The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said that about 100 tonnes of bad naira notes were generated as waste and destroyed weekly through open air burning at its 12 disposal centres across the country.
Meanwhile, the apex bank has commenced the process of collaboration with private firms to recycle bad naira notes instead of open air burning which is detrimental to the environment and against the industry’s Sustainable Banking Principles.
The CBN disclosed this in a notice titled, “Request for Proposal for the Recycling of Paper Banknote Wastes”.
The CBN stated that: “The destruction of unfit banknotes in Nigeria is carried out by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) under strict security and environmentally sustainable manner.
Section 18(d) of the CBN Act 2007 authorised “The bank to arrange for the destruction of currency notes and coins withdrawn from circulation under the provision of section 20(3) of the said Act or otherwise found by the Bank to be unfit for use.
“The banknotes disposal operation is presently carried out in 12 disposal centres across the country weekly where about 100 tonnes of paper banknote wastes are generated. These wastes are destroyed through open air burning in sites owned by the bank or rented, usually from the respective State Governments.
“Paper banknote wastes disposal by open air burning impacts negatively on the environment thereby causing pollution and health hazards. The Central Bank of Nigeria in pursuance of its sustainability initiatives has reviewed the current method of banknote wastes disposal through open air burning with the aim of adopting more environmentally sustainable method thereby reducing its carbon foot print.
Speaking on the rationale and efforts to substitute open air destruction with recycling, the apex bank stated: “Recycling is the process of converting waste materials into reusable objects to prevent wastage of potentially useful materials, reduce the consumption of fresh raw materials, minimise energy usage, avoid probable air pollution (from incineration) and water pollution (from landfilling).
“It has been identified as the most environmentally sustainable method of banknote waste disposal that could be explore. In this mode, the banknote wastes would be recycled by converting the wastes into useful products. Recycling of banknote wastes would enhance economic activities in the country in addition to environmental sustainability.
“Central Bank of Nigeria is seeking proposals from accredited recycling companies interested in utilizing paper banknote wastes in its recycling process. The purpose of this Request for Proposal (RFP) is to solicit competitive proposals from reputable companies that can recycle CBN paper banknote wastes into useable products that can be beneficial to the nation while adhering to Health Safety and Environment (HSE) Standards.”