A CHIEFTAIN of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Sunny Onuesoke says the frequent natural disasters experienced in some parts of Nigeria is traceable to climate change.
Speaking in Lagos at an event on the effect of deforestation in Nigeria, he said this was aggravated by the increased emission of greenhouse gases and loss of forest cover due to deforestation.
The former Delta State gubernatorial candidate lamented that the removal of trees without sufficient reforestation has resulted in damages to habitat, biodiversity loss and aridity with adverse impacts on bio-sequestration of atmospheric carbon dioxide in different parts of the country..H
He noted that although the federal government has increased afforestation and reforestation efforts under various projects and programmes to augment natural regeneration processes, but the rate of afforestation is not commensurate with the rate of deforestation which consequently calls for the various state governors assistant.
While calling for a review of forestry policy of 2006, he advised that the national forest management plan, with clear objectives for conservation, utilization and sustainable management should be developed. He said, ” from this, the states forestry department can develop their own site specific forest management plan taking into account the three aspects of sustainable development of social, economic and culture,” said the chieftain.
Describing afforestation as planting of trees manually in a methodical and planned manner which is different to natural forest to replace the depletion of forest, Onuesoke said it has a lot of advantages which include, “ increase greenery, avoidance of desertification, aiding of farming, increase of water resources, reduces of air pollution, aid in minimizing global warming and increases of content in oxygen in environment,” he noted.
Onuesoke advised Nigeria governors to priotise afforestation budget in their respective states.