From Felix Ikem, Nsukka
The Nigeria Institute of Soil Science, (NISS), South East Zone has trained Farmers and Extension Agents in the zone on Climate-smart Agriculture (CSA), aimed at achieving food security in Nigeria with minimal environmental degradation.
Prof Charles Asadu, the South East NISS Zonal Coordinator while flagging off the training workshop in Nsukka on Friday said that Climate-smart Agriculture is an approach for transforming and reorienting the agricultural system to support food security under the new realities of climate change.
He said that proper knowledge of CSA by farmers and extension agents would help them enhance productivity, and increase income while maintaining healthy soil.
According to him, “the Nigeria Institute of soil science is mandated with regulating the profession of soil science in Nigeria, providing a scientific basis for enhancing and sustaining productivity of soil resources with minimal environmental degradation, especially with regards to food production in the country.
“The primary purpose of the CSA training is to engage farmers, extension workers, researchers, Agro-dealers, and other stakeholders on the impact of climate change on soil and agriculture and educate them on best soil management under the climate change protocols.
“The participants were selected from the five states in the southeast region, they are expected to organize similar training to other farmers and
extension agents in their various localities,” he said.
Asadu, a professor of soil science
whose office is domiciled at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) warned against bush burning and deforestation, stressing that the act is harmful to soil moisture, urging farmers and other land users in the region to always consult their office for professional advice.
Prof Peter Ezeaku, Dean Faculty of Agriculture UNN and one of the resource persons who spoke on “Mitigation of Climate Change Effects for Sustainable Agricultural Production” said that message passed to extension agents bothered on how they should be able to send the new technologies on smart agriculture to the farmers for sustainable crop production.
“The training centered is how to imbibe the new technologies on smart agriculture to the farmers to see the level of diffusion, how to ensure food security, how to boost soil fertility, agricultural productivity, we well as how to employ good improved agricultural practices into the farm,” he said.
One of the participants, Mr. Sunday Kalu, from Abia State in an interview with our reporter shortly after the workshop commended NISS for organizing the training for farmers and extension agents in South East.
“With the training on CSA, farmers and extension agents in the southeast zone are now well informed on best climate change management that would enhance productivity at a profit.
“We thank NISS for organizing and sponsoring this very important training opportunity, we are going back to our various bases to train others who could not make it here today as well as put all we learn today into practice,” he said.
The participants were trained on the following topics: Introduction to Climate Change Agriculture Module, Why Climate-Smart Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries, and Landscape Management, and Effects of Flood on Soil and Environment, among others.
A certificate of participation was presented to the participants by Prof Asadu.
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