FUTA Overview

Participants Proffer Solution to Climate Change at FUTA Environmental Conservation Conference

Effective synergy among the relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies of Government and other relevant institutions and organizations with mandates in environmental conservation should be at the front burner at state discussions to effectively mitigate the adverse effects of climate change and global warming. This was the thrust of the 6th World Environmental Conservation Conference organized by the Netlink Environmental Conservation Organization in conjunction with the West African Science Service Centre on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use. WASCAL held at the Obafemi Awolowo Auditorium of the Federal University of Technology Akure, between Wed 17th–Friday 20th October. 

The DG, CEO, African Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education, Ile-Ife and a FUTA Alumnus, Professor Rabiu Babatunde who spoke on the topic, “Climate Partnership Actions for Sustainable Future and Restoring Life on Earth”, defined climate change as a long-term change in the average weather patterns that have come to define Earth’s local, regional and global climates. According to Professor Rabiu, factors such as carbon dioxide and other gases released as a result of human activities such as burning fossils fuels for electricity, industry and transportation, the cutting down of trees on large scale for fuel are some of the factors responsible for climate change. The Erudite scholar said ways to know that climate is indeed changing are already upon mankind. He said the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have shrunk, where 2 trillion tons of ice from Greenland ice sheet has made its way into the Atlantic Ocean water in the last decade, 15 of the 16 hottest years on record have occurred in the twenty-first century. 

Rabiu said the consequences of climate change such as declining rainfall, very hot summers, intense droughts, water scarcity, severe fires witnessed around the world, rising sea levels, incessant flooding, melting polar ice, catastrophic storms, declining biodiversity among others are responsible for loss of lives resulting from earth quakes, famine and other natural disasters. He reemphasized that government should as a matter of urgency treat the issues of climate change with utmost importance. He said addressing the climate change issue requires adapting new measures in Agriculture, Technology, Architecture, daily business, modification of the educational curriculum, cutting down of emissions, encourage Afforestation which is tree planting, Global partnership must be pursued on the part of Government and the private sectors too are not left out. 

The Conservator General of the Federation, Dr, Ibrahim Goni, while addressing the gathering, described climate partnership actions as collaborative efforts among different stakeholders to mitigate climate change effects to promote sustainability. The CG identified the benefits of Climate Partnership Actions as climate adaptation promotion, fostering implementation of low emission actions, and encouraging joint efforts towards sustainability. He said the challenges bedevilling the partnership are insecurity, lack of political will, Economic challenges such as lack of funding, Technological limitations, and lack of coordination and collaboration and off course climate scepticism. He said roles of National park services in achieving the partnership include implementation of International treaties and conventions, implementation of the National Forestry Trust Fund, and review of National Forestry policy. 

Speaking earlier, the Vice Chancellor Professor Adenike Oladiji, represented by the Deputy Vice Chancellor Development, Professor Sunday Oluyamo commended FUTA WASCAL for its several strides in innovation and research. She said too much can’t be said on climate partnership as it’s the way forward to a sustainable future and restoration of life on Erath. She said Government should endeavour to take more responsibility in ensuring that climate partnership Actions policies are made and implemented. She welcomed all participants and wished them a fruitful deliberation. The Director WASCAL, Professor Debo Adeyewa, described Climate change as a challenge which is everyone’s responsibility. He restated that the climate and weather will be fair to mankind only if mankind is fair to it. He urged the Federal government to take more responsibility in making sure that the disasters caused by climate change are abated. 

The commissioner for Environment Ondo State, Mr Sunday Akinwalere, commended the organizers and FUTA, for always being at the forefront of innovations and partnership sustainability. He said climate change is a very sensitive topic as Ondo State falls within one of the coastal states in Nigeria. He said with the effort taken already by the government and help from FUTA through WASCAL and from climate related conferences hosted by the university, awareness on how to live better so as to reduce degradation of the earth will be created. 

The Convener of the Conference and President, Netlink Environmental Conservation Organization, Dr Sunday Oladeji said the conference was put together to generate ideas from relevant stakeholders at the international, national, and local levels that would lead to workable solutions in the ongoing efforts to mitigate the effect of global warming and save the environment from further degradation. He said participants and other interested organisations would benefit tremendously from the insightful research outputs that have been published in the conference proceedings in over fifty articles. He said collaboration on solving issues relating to the environment should continue. “We will continue to channel efforts toward finding workable solutions to the environmental menace that is seriously threatening biodiversity. There is no gain saying that Climate change is a catastrophic and life-threatening phenomenon that requires urgent action. As an NGO, we cannot do it alone, and that is the essence of calling the attention of other stakeholders in partnership with WASCAL, a leading institution with a mission to find a lasting solution to the issue of cli-mate change as epitomized in the theme of the 6th World Environmental Conservation Conference. NECOR has realised that collaboration and synergy are key to resolving the evolving environmental catastrophe of climate change,” Dr Oladeji said.