Perplexed by the dangers of environmental pollution to human life, a gathering of experts in Ogun State convened on Wednesday to discuss potential solutions.
During the 16th National Conference and Annual General Meeting of the Nigeria Institute of Landscape Horticulture (NILH) at the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, these experts also advocated for legislative support in passing a bill that would require landlords to plant trees on their properties.
In her keynote address, the Provost of the Federal College of Agriculture, Moor Plantation, Ibadan, Oyo State, Dr Elizabeth Augustus, advocated green solutions to combat environmental pollution, calling for actions to curb the dire consequences.
In this same vein, Dr Augustus, who spoke on the theme “Urban Greenery and Beautification as a Strategy for Control of Environmental Pollution and Climate Change,” emphasised the multifaceted impacts of environmental pollution on society, ranging from climate change to the contamination of water and soil.
She added that the detrimental effects of environmental pollution on aquatic life, agricultural produce, and wildlife underscored the danger it poses to human health.
According to her, “Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, respiratory issues, and heightened hospitalisation rates were identified as major concerns linked to pollution.”
She advocated for a strategic method in environmental management, emphasizing the importance of greenery and beautification as essential interventions.
Speaking further, she pointed out the critical role of plants in the global carbon cycle and their potential for mitigating climate change.
“This innovative approach involves plants absorbing ionic compounds and extending their root systems to accumulate heavy metals, effectively reclaiming polluted soil and stabilising fertility,” she explained.
Also, the President of NILH, Kola Quadri, urged the National Assembly to pass a law mandating homeowners to plant at least one tree within their premises to combat the adverse effects of climate change in Nigeria.
“Climate change in Nigeria is a worrisome menace that is causing problems all over the world. The problem is not peculiar to Nigeria alone.
“The National Assembly should implement laws and make it mandatory for every homeowner to plant at least a tree at the front of their house. It should start with the local government, and then the state should take it up. Let the state assemblies first pass the law,” he added.
While remarking, Emmanuel Bankole, the chairman of the institute in Ogun State, highlighted that the program’s purpose is to draw policymakers’ attention to the impacts of climate change and suggest possible solutions.
Bankole hinted that the institute will work with the government at all levels to ensure that global warming is mitigated “so that we can preserve our environment for ourselves and the coming generation.”