Stakeholders in the environment sector have called for strategic plans that would address the nation’s climate change crisis.
Emir of Nasarawa, Ibrahim Jibril, who spoke at the Pre-COP28 Seminar organized by Development Agenda Magazine and Environmental Media Correspondents Association of Nigeria in Abuja, in his presentation, titled “Driving Climate Actions Lessons from Grassroots”, stated that the environmental issues have become top-charts across the globe that need strong commitment and determination to address.
The Emir called on the government and relevant stakeholders to get involved to provide lasting solutions to climate change issues in Nigeria.
In his words, “Environmental issues have become global challenges, Nigeria is not left out with the challenges, Nigeria is not left out, for instance, the diversification, land encroachment and oil pollution among others.
“This is a wakeup call for all governments, and stakeholders to get involved, saying, the seminar was very important to provide an opportunity for introspection about the response to the problem of climate change.”
In his own remarks, the Conservator General of the National Park Service, Ibrahim Goni, noted the theme: Climate Change and COP28: The Way Forward for Nigeria, is apt and urged all levels of government to mitigate climate change challenges.
He then emphasized that environmental challenges have a serious impact on living conditions globally, stressing that any attempt not to address them with the seriousness it deserves would spell disaster for the world and the entire country.
Meanwhile, In his own part, Publisher Development Agenda Magazine, Paddy Ezeala, said that the forum was meant for stocktaking on the state of the environment and evaluating various climate issues confronting the country.
He said the Sahel region, especially, the international boundaries with Niger and Chad, which is under the severe menace of desertification, evokes the image of aridity.
“In Southern Nigeria, it is as if war has been declared on the natural environment, not even protected areas are spared. Massive and uncontrolled logging has been taking place in many states. The level of illegal logging in Cross River, Edo, Ogun and some states in North Central is disturbing.
“Between 1981 and 2000, Nigeria lost 3.7 million hectares of forests. At present, less than 4 per cent of the country’s untouched rainforest cover is left. More frightening is the fact that loss is continuing at the rate of more than 3.5 per cent yearly,” he said.
The government, Ezeala urged, should harness the potential of the forests in the development of eco-tourism and scientific research.
Earlier in his own remarks, the Chairman Environmental Media Correspondents Association of Nigeria, EMCAN, Amechi Oyema called on the stakeholders to articulate strategic plans that would protect the ecological integrity of National Parks through protective conservation.