Desertification in Nigeria (Google Alert / allAfrica / Daily Trust)

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Daily Trust (Abuja)

Nigeria: 600 Metres of Borno Land Consumed Annually By Desert, FG Warns

Ahmed Mohammed Maiduguri

Statistics from the Federal Ministry of Environment have shown that about 600 meters of land in Borno state is annually consumed by the Sahara Desert. The general manager of the Borno State Environmental Protection Agency, Alhaji Abba Aji Agid, disclosed this to Kanem Trust in his office. Alhaji Abba Aji said the main ecological problems of Borno state are drought and desertification which threaten agriculture and the eco-system unless the government intensifies effort to save the situation. He lamented that the situation is exacerbated by the habit of cutting trees for cooking especially in the southern parts of the state where trees are felled and even transported to neighbouring states of Kano and Adamawa.

Alhaji Abba Aji commended the federal and state governments for their effort to solve environmental problems through controlling desertification by creating shelter belts which he said will go along way in protecting the environment. The general manager said the state government along Damasak road planted 14 kilometers of trees which has now matured while the federal government through its desertification control programme embarked on shelter belt creation through the deserts from Damasak in Borno state up to Sokoto state. He appealed to community to support the government’s effort on environmentally friendly initiatives by planting at least a tree in each household and farms.

On the activities of his agency, the general manager said they carried out all environmental health programmes like sanitation, evacuation of refuse dumps, drainages as well as daily cleaning of refuse in the streets or in the strategic locations within Maiduguri and beyond.

Author: Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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