The Lagos state government has announced it plans to plant about 230,000 trees between now and the end of the year as part of its effort to tackle the effects of climate change in the state.
The state government also urged residents to imbibe a clean, improved and enhanced positive approach to a climate-friendly environment in order to encourage agroforestry.
Abisola Olusanya, special adviser to the governor on Agriculture, who made this known recently during the 2020 International Day of Forest, explained that these measures become imperative in order to discourage tree felling as well as prevent flooding in the state.
Olusanya noted that the underlying effects of climate change had over the year led to the loss of properties all over the world, stressing that the theme ‘Forests and Biodiversity’ was aimed at promoting the love for the forest, underscoring the importance of education at all levels in achieving sustainable forest management and biodiversity conservation.
“The importance of today’s celebration cannot be overemphasized especially against the background of the effects of climate change resulting from the destruction of our forests which in turn have killed millions, displaced millions and have led to the loss of properties and structures worth billions of dollars all over the world,” Olusanya said in a statement.
She explained that climate change effects, which include water stress, flooding, earthquake, earth movement, flash flooding, erosion of different types and degrees were due to the uncontrolled removal of forests leading to 13 million hectares of forests been destroyed annually.
According to her, deforestation accounts for about 20 percent of the global greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change regardless of the importance of forests which are the most biological- diverse ecosystems on land.
She opined that over 1.6billion global population including more than 2,000 indigenous people depend on forests for livelihoods, medicines, fuel, food, and shelter.
Olusanya says that Lagos currently has over 600,000 hectares of agricultural land being bastardized by surface miners leading to the fear that the host communities may be submerged.
The special adviser stressed that presently, the efforts at reforestation cannot be said to be proportional to the rate of exploitation which put the country at risk of losing its entire forest cover which might lead to the continued experience of changing climate patterns occasioned by the continued emissions of green gases that would have been sequestrated by the forests.