By Elizabeth Uwandu

As the world and indeed Nigeria population growth triple, the Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has said climate change and global warning will be greatly managed through tree planting.

Sanwo-Olu
File: Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu

He made this known at the 2019 tree planting campaign event tagged, “ Clean and Green is our Perfect Dream’’organised by Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education, AOCOED Oto/Ijanikin, in partnership with the Lagos State Ministry of Environment.

Sanwo-Olu whose speech was read by the Provost of AOECOED, Dr Omolola Ladele, explained that all hands must be on deck to sustain the green economy.

According to him, “ Tree planting is one of the strategies to combat the effect of climate change and global warming.  This initiative and its sustenance over the past years, is a testimony to the foresight of previous administrations to ensure a healthy environment as well as protecting the general well being of the citizenry.

“As we increase efforts towards ridding the state of waste, all hands must be on deck to also improve the aesthetics of the environment by adorning it with ornamental plants, beautiful flowers, shrubs and trees.

“We cannot keep on ignoring climate change, which is the most significant material risk to our future. It is also the world’s most devastating threat to human survival. We can no longer pretend that we have a society at ease with itself.”

The Governor who lamented the spate of tree cutting noted that, “ Let us be reminded that there is no short or long term benefit of cutting down trees. The notion that when a tree is cut down, five trees should be planted as a replacement is grossly inadequate.

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“The truth is that, while tree replacement may perfectly rekindle our hope, they are not equal in biodiversity. Man-made forest do not compensate for the damage and degradation done to the ecosystem through land clearance, therefore, when primary tropical forest is lost, they can never be recovered.” he said.

Lagos to commence ‘One House, One Tree’ campaign across the State

Sanwo-Olu added that, “ In furtherance to our commitment to a green and sustainable environment, it gives me great pleasure to announce that we are re-launching the ‘One House, One Tree’ campaign across the state. The campaign is to ensure that every house in Lagos possesses at least one tree which we believe would go a long way to intensifying our greening project.

Permanent Secretary, Ministry of the Environment, Mr. Abiodun Bamgboye, represented by Mr. S. Idowu, said “For the industrialists among us, it is instructive to note that putting up ultra-modern factories, large shopping malls, beautiful mansions, fantastic car parks, mega petrol stations without any reservation for greening does not compensate for what has been taken away from nature.

On her part, Dr. Ladele whose speech was read by the Deputy Provost, AOECOED, Dr. Deborah Dele-Giwa, reiterated that tertiary education institutions, and indeed the country should sustain the effort of tree planting by planting at least a tree for every milestone achievement.

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“Staff in the College could personalise tree planting culture. For instance, as staff, you could plant a tree to mark your promotion, birthday and other major events. You will have a cause to smile any time you sight the tree. Similarly at the level of the College, tree planting could be included in the programme of some of its public events such as convocation and conferences.

“Such trees could be tagged to indicate the events for which they were planted. By this, tree planting will cease to be only a yearly event and help maximize the potential benefits of tree planting such as providing beautiful shades under which we can enjoy cool breeze after a day’s work and enhancing the beautification of our campus”, Dele-Giwa said.

Ladele who led dignitaries that included representative of Lagos State Parks and Gardens Agency LASPARK, Mrs. B. Adebiyi-Abiola and the College community to plant trees hinted that the College was set to generate its street lights through solar power. “ The College has started with an effort to power its street lights by solar energy. This is designed to reduce its carbon footprint and integrate sound environmental practices within the College. “We also believe that there should be direct, personal action on the part of students and staff to control greenhouse gas emissions, not only on the campus but also at home. Such action will have effect that ripples out into the community.” AOCOED Provost stated.

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