The University of Abuja (UniAbuja) and Global Initiative for Food Security and Ecosystem Preservation (GIFSEP), an NGO, are collaborating to create awareness about the impact of climate change and other environmental challenges in the country.
Prof. Shuaibu Hassan, Director, Center for Environmental Studies of the University, disclosed this on Thursday at a press briefing and presentation of the 2021 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, (IPCC) report, in Abuja.
Hassan said that the aim of the meeting was to enlighten the public on the IPCC sixth assessment report and the need for Nigerians to be committed in ensuring a sustainable environment.
The director explained that IPCC was created to provide policy makers with regular scientific assessments on climate change, its implications and potential future risks, as well as to put forward adaptation and mitigation options.
According to him, we need to create awareness in the citizens that we are part of what is going on in the international community, as such we also need to work towards contributing to our quota, towards mitigating climate change.
He disclosed that the university Senate had just approved for the centre to run doctorate degrees in environmental management, to ensure that centre, by its efforts, played its role in addressing the environmental challenges in the country.
Hassan cited planting trees as part of the many solutions to global warming caused by too much greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
“The less trees we have, the more the greenhouse gases stay in the air, the more trees we have, the less greenhouse gas in the air, trees are a critical solution to climate change challenges.
“The NGO is willing to help the University of Abuja plant 1,000 trees before the end of 2021. It is part of tackling the environmental challenges in the country,’’ he said.
He called on Nigerians to do the needful, by managing resources wisely and refrain from indiscriminate dumping of waste in the environment, while also embarking on effective sensitisation on the impact of climate change and other environmental challenges in the country.
“Creating awareness in the public, especially those in vulnerable communities, who might not know the impact of climate change, is essential to let them know the dangers associated with cutting down trees and counsel those who engage in some of the activities affecting the environment negatively to stop such activities,’’ he said.
Mr David Terungwa, Executive Director of the NGO, said that the IPCC report had been tagged ‘code red’, a synonym for something capable of becoming a serious danger to humanity.
Terungwa said that his organisation decided to collaborate with the University, to enable experts to review the report and know its implications for Nigeria.
He called on the Ministry of Mines and Steel and Development to stop issuing coal mining licenses to illegal miners, adding that this was capable of increasing the country’s environmental challenges.
We should not go the way of coal, the ministry of mines and steel should stop issuing coal licenses to illegal miners, he said, adding that illegal coal mining was coming strong in the society and its environmental impact can be dangerous.
“As it is, the entire world is feeling it that the environment is not properly being taken care of, we demand climate justice, but this cannot happen without taking action ourselves.
“We call on the Federal, state and local governments to help with climate justice, by enlightening the citizens on the importance of climate change impact and ways to tackle the problem”, Terungwa said. (NAN)
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