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Scientists worry over effects of climate change on Lagos

By Olayinka Latona
SCIENTISTS have warned that the global climate change will have a strong impact on Nigeria particularly in the areas of agriculture, land use, energy, biodiversity, health amongst others. This was revealed during the 2nd Lagos State summit on climate change with the theme “Trans-Boundary Effect of Climate Change: Sharing Best Practices in Mitigation and Adaptation Measures.”

Giving  an overview, Prof. Felix Dayo a scientist and speaker at the Summit said  inundation and warmer temperature will lead to higher incidences of proliferation of vector disease such as malaria and other water borne disease. He said such incidence will affect the health of the whole populace thereby creating  room for higher cases of malaria in the country.

“The only place malaria parasite and the carrier strives well is under higher temperature and if there is elevated temperature what will happen is that the malaria parasite will thrive more and affect the health sector greatly.”

Also speaking about the possibility of sea level rise in parts of Lagos State, he said:  “We are scientists, not soothsayers we have given the possible scenario that can happen in the future .We can’t predict the exact time frame that the scourge can occur, though there will be sea level rise but we can not tell you when it will occur. Between now and 2015 there are several scenarios that can likely rear up, such as the sea level rising in one to one meter, we have also shown different part of Lagos State at which level they are right now.

“There are some areas that are one to two metres higher than the sea level; some are two to two metres above and three, so if you have a sea level rise of one point four, definitely any place that is one metre will be inundated.  A colleague said many parts of Lagos are below two metres and the whole of Ikoyi and Victoria Island is about one metre therefore if one point four meter sea level occurs then these people will be inundated. If we have extreme event scourge which we can’t predict, it will likewise affect places that are three metres upland.”

The Lagos State government was however advised to embark on building walls higher than two metres in coastal areas to protect the surge and also put in strategic places all materials that can be used to curb any occurrence in the future. .

Muiz Banire, Minister of Environment in his  reaction said there are facilities on ground for future occurrences while the State is aspiring to buy other equipment to evacuate  people in the event of any emergency. He said  an early warning system has been built which identifies vulnerable areas in Lagosm and  noted that residents of Adeniji, Shomolu amongst others have been advised to evacuate  because the areas  are below sea level.


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