The Canadian Government has commended the efforts of the Nigerian Government,through the Nigerian Conservation Foundation ( NCF ) in addressing climate change.
Canadian Deputy High Commission to Nigeria, Dr. Teshome Nkrumah made this known at the 40th anniversary celebration of Nigerian Conservation Foundation, NCF, in Lagos.
Delivering the keynote address, Dr Nkrumah said nature based solutions to climate change including tree planting, adopted by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation were in line towards addressing biodiversity loss, ecosystem degradation, coastal erosion, among other contemporary environmental disasters.
Dr. Nkrumah, who applauded the foundation for vigorously pursuing its Green Recovery Nigeria project of replacing 25 percent of Nigeria’s loss forests cover, stated that similar effort was being executed in Canada where the government has pledged to plant 2 billion trees within the next 10 years.
He said Nigerian government must take the issue of environment seriously, given the enormity of climate crisis facing the world.
He stated that though developed countries played a role in causing climate change through many years of industrial emission, the fact that the disaster does not respect borders demands that all nations and persons should take the issue seriously.
Nkrumah urged the country to intensify conservation efforts in line with the recommendation of scientists to limit global warming at the appropriate temperature of 1.5 degrees Celsius, to win the fight against climate Change. Nigeria to intensify conservation efforts in line with the recommendation of scientists to limit global warming at the appropriate temperature of 1.5 degrees Celsius, to win the fight against climate Change.
According to him , nations should double their commitments in tackling climate change as studies by scientists have shown that all the pledges made by countries in their Nationally Determined Contribution in line with the Paris Climate Agreement would only succeed in limiting global warming at 2.5 degrees Celsius as against the approved 1.5 degrees Celsius.
Nkrumah noted that though “climate change is and will be for a while the defining crisis of our time”, he was optimistic that with shared responsibility on the efforts of individuals and governments, it could be controlled, as he showered encomiums on the NCF for its consistency in championing environmental sustainability programmes for the past 40 years.
“Climate change will nonetheless require a fundamental transformation in all aspects of society.
“How we grow food, use land, transport goods, and power our economies.
“Many nature-based solutions can help to achieve the decarbonisation of our economies”, Nkrumah said.
The Chairman, National Executive Council of NCF, Chief Ede Dafinone called on Lagos State Government to intervene to avert the possible wiping off of parts of Lekki-Epe by ocean surge as revealed by a recent study by the foundation.
The DG of NCF, Dr. Joseph Onoja said Lagos State Government has tried but must do a lot more giving the threat by ocean surge
He promised that the foundation would in the next 10 years work aggressively to achieve its mandate in 4 pillars namely saving species, climate Change, Green Recovery Nigeria and Partnerships.
In his remark, the governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-olu who was represented by his Special Adviser on Special Duties and Intergovernmental Relations, Mr. Mobolaji Ogunlende stressed his administration commitment to Nature Conservation as he lauded NCF for rendering vital services to the nation.
He expressed joy that the Founder of the NCF, Chief Lawal Edu, of blessed memory, was an illustrious son of the state.
Sanwo-Olu said that it was also important to note that the death of Edu did not lead to the death of his dream for nature conservation, protection of biodiversity and environmental sustainability.
According to him, Edu gathered all worthy friends and associates who have been able to continue the good work for 40 years.
He said that one of the enduring partnerships between the state government and the NCF had been in the “Walk for Nature” project which had continued for over 15 years.
The governor said that the project had continued to sensitise the public on the need for environmental protection, sustainability and conservation of nature.
At the occasion, the duo of former Nigerian Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Chief Emeka Anyaoku (MFR) and former Minister of Defence, General Theophilus Danjuma retired, (GCON) received Special Recognition Award for their many years of financial support to environmental sustainability projects.
While long service awards were given to six NCF employees, the founder of the foundation, Late Chief Shafi Lawal Edu and nine others were given posthumous awards for chatting the course for environmental protection in the country.
The 40th anniversary celebration of NCF which was marked by a Dinner Night had the theme “Only One Earth”.