KWSG Seeks Collaboration to end Deforestation

(LR: the Commissioner for Water Resources, Honourable Lade Usman, Deputy Governor, Mr Kayode Alabi, State Commissioner for Environment, Mallam Shehu Ndanusa Usman and many others the planting of trees during the International Forestry Day held at the newly beautification Flower Garden, Ilorin.)


Kwara State Government has again called for further collaborations from individuals and corporate organization to end deforestation, consequent upon illegal felling of trees in the state.

The Executive Governor of Kwara State and Chairman of the Nigeria Governors' Forum Mallam AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, disclosed this in Ilorin during the commemorate of year 2024 International Day of Forest, held at the newly beautified Flower Garden. 

Speaking at the event, the Governor stated that, 'as the world celebrates this year's International Day of Forests, the battle against deforestation requires new ideas, collaborations and support of everyone". 

The Governor who was represented by his Deputy, Mr. Kayode Alabi, affirmed that, innovations and technology have revolutionised forest monitoring, enabling countries to track and report on their forests more effectively and guide against all harmful practices, such as deforestation. 

According to him, a total of 13.7 billion tons of carbon dioxide forest emission, reductions or enhancements have been reported to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) through transparent and innovative forest monitoring. 

 With 10 million hectares of land lost annually, due to deforestation and approximately 70 million hectares affected by fires, there is need for innovations for early warning system, sustainable commodity production, empowering indigenous people through land mapping and climate finance access." AbdulRazaq further explained.

While emphasising on the importance of healthy forests, the Governor stressed that; "protecting the forests helps to mitigate some of the human health related effects of climate change by acting as carbon sinks that regulate the planet temperature and regulate water flows.
"Not only do over 1.6 billon people depend on forests for food and fuel, forest industries, in fact, provide a wide range of products and services such as lumber, paper, pulp, and bio energy."
Speaking on efforts at afforestation in the state, Governor AbdulRazaq said the day "serves to celebrate and raise awareness on all types of forests. I am again restating the need for everyone to imbibe the culture of tree planting, nurturing and conservation for a better environment," he added. 

AbdulRazaq explained further that his administration had been able to achieve, among other things, counterpart funding of Agro-Climatic Resilience in Semi-Arid Landscapes (ACReSAL) projects across the State and the rehabilitation and remodelling of Flower Garden which has gained international recognition. 
Other achievements of the current administration are the city beautification and greening projects across the Metropolis, the inauguration of Task Force on prohibition of charcoal production in the State, the inauguration of an inter ministerial committee on climate change, among others.
Governor AbdulRazaq then disclosed the commitment of his administration to supporting the innovations that lead to effective implementations of sustainable environmental strategies, for the betterment of our people.

Earlier in his remarks, the Commissioner of Environment, Mallam Shehu Ndanusa Usman had described forests as powerhouse of the ecosystem as their importance extends beyond timbers and fundamental to our collective continued existence as human beings. 

According to him; "forests are among the world's most productive renewable natural resources, providing many paths, to sustainable development."

In the same vein, the Director of Forestry in the ministry, Mr. Babatunde Idris Mahmoud stated that technology will prove to be a game changer as satellite data and drone imagery among other cutting edge tools, will revolutionize the way to track and monitor deforestation changes, to the forests estates. 

He noted that Agro forestry and green buildings are part of innovations in tackling challenges of climate change, in the society. 

Also, the State Project Coordinator for ACRESAL, Mr. Shasideen Olatunbosun Aregbe said, by embracing new ideas and approaches, the challenges facing forests, including deforestation, illegal logging, climate change and biodiversity loss can be addressed. 

"Through innovation, we can develop more efficient ways to monitor and protect forests, promote sustainable land use practices and engage local communities in conservation efforts," he affirmed. 

The event witnessed a symbolic tree planting by the Deputy Governor and other dignitaries who graced the occasions.

Among top government functionaries in attendance include; members of the state Cabinet, Permanent Secretaries, Principal Officers of the Ministry and Students of St. Anthony Secondary School, Ilorin, led by the Principal, Mr Joseph Dada, including others.

Yakub Kamaldeen Aliagan,
Press Secretary,
MOE

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