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Ghana News

EPA Threatens Closure of Unauthorized Churches in Volta Region

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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued a warning to churches operating without permits or in unauthorized areas in the Volta Region. The EPA has granted permits to churches to operate within specific areas in communities, and they are required to renew their permits regularly to continue their operations.

The decision to clamp down on churches operating without permits comes in response to the growing trend of churches sited in unauthorized places in the region, causing noise and other forms of nuisance to residents, especially at night.

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According to Hope Smith Lomotey, the Volta Regional Director of EPA, the discomfort caused by prolonged noise is a public health issue. Loud noise can cause hearing impairment, high blood pressure, heart diseases, sleep disorders, and stress for people within the neighborhood.

At a meeting with about 200 church leaders in the region, including the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council (GPCC), the Christian Council of Ghana, the National Association of Charismatic Churches, and the National Clergy Association Ghana (NACAG), the Vice-Chairman of the GPCC, Apostle Dr Dela Quampah, urged churches to respect the laws of the land and adhere to building regulations. He also expressed concern over noisy public address systems on the roofs of some church buildings, which he said were contributing to noise pollution and should be restricted.

For the most part, the EPA is taking this action to protect public health and ensure that churches operate within the confines of the law. The permitted noise level in residential areas during the day is 55 decibels and 48 decibels at night. Churches, like other groups, are expected to adhere to these regulations to prevent disturbances to residents.

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