…Calls for joint effort against environmental degradation
By Olasunkanmi Akoni
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Bababjide Sanwo-Olu, has disclosed plans to embark on a four year redevelopment plan with massive tree planting, along Lagos-Epe and Badagry Expressway, aimed at ensuring resilient and sustainable environment in the state.
Sanwo-Olu, disclosed this on Saturday, at the commissioning of Urban Regeneration Gardens, along Abraham Adesanya Housing Estate, Lekki Expressway, Ajah, as part of activities marking the 2021 World Environment Day.
The theme of 2021 edition, “Ecosystem Restoration,” creating a good relationship with nature, marked the official launch of the UN ‘Decade of Action’ on ecosystem restoration, a 10 year 2021-2030 push to halt and reverse the decline of the natural world.
The governor, who was represented by the state Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr Tunji Bello, noted that Lagos had witnessed tremendous social and economic development which had also brought negative impacts on the environment.
He continued: “These negative impacts have chopped down forest, plowed the grasslands, slaughtered wildlife, filled in wetlands and polluted air and water.
” The causes of degradation are many and can have impact at different scales. However, these impacts have pushed the ecosystem to the breaking point.
“Ecosystem can be restored by growingorevdiverse crops, including trees. These steps can rebuild carbon stores in soils, making them more fertile so the growing population can be fed.
Restoration initiatives can be launched by almost
“Restoring ecosystem s large and small protects and improves the livelihood of people who depends on them. It also helps to regulate disease and reduce the risk of natural disasters. Restoration can help us achieve all of the sustainable development goals.
“Hence, the reason why Lagos State Government, under the present administration will soon embark on the four year redevelopment plan of Lagos Epe Expressway, commencing from Abraham Adesanya to Epe with restoration of greenery to enhance sir quality of the environment and also serve as relaxation centres.
“For expansion, in future, we will be moving to Badagry axis as part of ensuring sustainable environment across the state.”
Sanwo-Olu, however, stressed that in ensuring a safe, resilient and sustainable Lagos; “There is the need to respond to the call for action that will last a decade in restoring our ecosystem and joining the rest of the world to combat the unsustainable consumption of natural resources.
“This forum is a carion call to citizens to join Lagos State Government in the fight against environmental degradation and pollution. All hands must be on deck.”
Also, Special Adviser to the Governor on Drainage and Water Resources, Engr Joe Igbokwe, urged residents to stand against acts capable of degrading the environment.
Igbokwe said, “The state Government is not relenting in keeping the environment clean and healthy in the overall benefits of residents.”
An Environmentalist, Desmond Majekodunmi, expressed satisfaction with the complete regeneration of the park.
He, however, urged the Federal Government to fulfil her promise of planting 25 million trees to sustain the environment of which only five millions had been done so far.
Dr.Joseph Onoja, of Nigeria Conservation Foundation, wanted government to increase enforcement of laws against people who constitute nuisance to the environment.
However, some individuals and organisations received various awards for their contributions to the good of the environment.