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NCF, Total Energies Step up School Tree Planting Campaign in Abuja

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The Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) has partnered with TotalEnergies to plant trees and clean up school environment in Abuja.

The tree planting and clean-up exercise took place at Government Secondary School (GSS), Tudun Wada in the Federal Capital Territory.

Muhammed Boyin, an official of NCF stated that the aim of the initiative was to sensitize students on the importance of tree planting and educate them on the values associated with it.

“We get shades, food and medicine from trees.

Trees play a major role in mitigating climate change because they have the ability to absorb carbon from the atmosphere and convert it to something useful to man.

“Also, the challenge of mosquitoes within the school and environs would be eradicated when we plant trees and clean up the environment.

“We have also established NCF club in the school to assist in nurturing the seedlings planted today,” he said.

Boyin urged the school management and students to maintain the seedlings planted and nurture them into full trees.

Also speaking, Omolabake Adebogun, the Sales Executive of TotalEnergies, encouraged the students to imbibe the culture of planting trees in the environment, saying, “ we all have the duty to protect the environment.”

“Say no when you see someone cutting a tree,” she said.

Adebogun noted that similar projects had been carried out in Kano, Kaduna, Lagos and other places where lots of trees were planted and nurtured.

The Principal, GSS, Mr Akor Joseph, stressed that the essence of tree planting could not be over emphasized, adding that it created shades and conducive environment for learning.

He stated that it also helped in controlling air pollution and erosion within the school.

Joseph promised to ensure the proper maintenance of the trees by watering it when necessary, while assuring that the students would be involved in the maintenance process.

“We will assign each participating student’s name on the trees planted today, so even after they leave the school, their names would remain on them,” he said.

Isah Hamza, the Head Boy of the school, said that the environment would be a better place when lots of trees were planted, stressing that more oxygen would be generated.

He urged fellow students within and outside the school community to cultivate the habit of planting trees in their environment.

Hamza urged his colleagues to report anyone, seen cutting down any tree to the appropriate authorities and promised to monitor and ensure that the trees were nurtured. (NAN)

Environment

Erosion Control Project: Gombe SEC Approves N389m Compensation for Residents

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The Gombe State Executive Council (SEC) has approved payment of N389 million as compensation for residents that would be affected by the gully erosion control project at Federal College of Education (FCE) Technical and its surrounding communities.

The Commissioner for Finance, Gombe State, Malam Mohammed Magaji, stated this at the end of the SEC meeting on Friday in Gombe.

Magaji said the payment, which would commence immediately, would be for individuals and organisations along the gully erosion site.

He said almost 1000 persons were expected to benefit from the gesture.

According to him, the compensation is part of the requirements of the World Bank, which specifies that such payments be made to property owners.

Magaji said the payment would also be made to ensure seamless resettlement of affected persons.

“The beneficiaries are in hundreds, almost a 1,000 people; there is compensation for houses, and also for business premises.

“There is also stipends for the elderly living around that area so that they are able to have good livelihood,” he said.

The commissioner for Education, Hajiya Aishatu Maigari, also said the SEC approved upgrade of the five mega senior secondary schools in the state to sustain improvement in the education sector.

Maigari said the upgrade would be carried out based on the needs of each of the schools.

She stated that infrastructure in some of the schools were already being upgraded to global standards.

“We have seen construction of toilets, installation of solar-powered light, construction of roads, school clinics, boreholes and many more,” she said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the state government had on Nov. 23 signed a N12 billion contract with Triacta Nigeria Ltd. for a 21-kilometre gully erosion control work in six communities within Gombe metropolis.

The project is under ACRESAL project, a World Bank-assisted project to address the challenges of land degradation and climate change in northern Nigeria. (NAN)

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Environment

Fire Razes Household Properties Estimated at Millions of Naira

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The Ebonyi Fire Service, on Tuesday confirmed that a fire incident destroyed properties estimated at millions of naira at the residence of Mr Chris Uchaji, a former commissioner in the state.

Mr Raphael Ibiam, the Chief Fire Officer of the agency, said that the inferno was suspected to have been caused by an electrical spark within the building.

He explained that the fire razed valuable household properties in three rooms of the storey building.

He said no life was lost in the incident as his men responded promptly and was later assisted by the Federal Fire Service.

“At about 0800 hours, there was a fire outbreak at 13 Lawrence Ónór street, off Nna street.

“It destroyed properties in a storey building belonging to Mr Chris Uchaji, a Former State Commissioner for Solid Mineral Development,” Ibiam said.

Uchaji told newsmen shortly after the incident, that he was at the stadium with his wife for morning exercise when he received a distress call from his security man that his family house was on fire.

“We quickly rushed to the scene, only to see many people on a rescue mission as the whole house had been engulfed.

“I suspected it was due to an electrical spark and it started in my wife’s room, where my six-year-old daughter was sleeping.

“The intensity of the fire was high and it spread to other rooms, causing massive damage, but thank God no life was lost.

“I thank God for people’s goodwill and the fire service. Though the state fire service came here, their water finished early, but with the intervention of federal firefighters, they were able to control the fire.” Uchaji said.(NAN)

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Nigeria’s NGO Takes Plights of Local Communities to COP28

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Connected Advocacy for Empowerment and Youth Development, a Nigeria-based NGO, has called for the involvement of local communities in decision-making on climate solutions in order to build a sense of responsibility and unity.

Mr Israel Orekha, Executive Director of the NGO, made the call on Monday in his address at a side event organised at the ongoing COP28 in Dubai.

“The event is themed “Putting Local Community First in Climate Agenda.

’’

Orekha advocated policy changes that incentivised and prioritised sustainable practices at the local and national levels

According to him, empowering communities through participation will ensure that solutions align with local needs.

He also called for inclusive policies that addressed both environmental and social aspects of clean energy transitions.

The executive director particularly canvassed for the consideration of local community in the clean energy transition plan.

The local community, he said, needed clean energy transition parks and not false solutions.

“Clean energy transition parks not only combat climate change but also strengthen community resilience.

“Local involvement in these parks is key to addressing pressing environmental challenges.

“Beyond jobs, clean energy engagement enhances community knowledge about sustainable practices.

“Involving communities in clean energy decisions fosters responsibility and unity.

“Local job opportunities and skill development can result from participation in the renewable energy sector.”

Orekha also underscored the importance of transparency in decision-making processes so as to discern genuine solutions from greenwashing.

“False solutions can perpetuate environmental injustice, disproportionately affecting marginalised communities.

“False solutions, like greenwashing, hinder genuine progress.

“Thorough research and community input are essential for sustainable solutions,’’ he said.

Reports says that clean energy parks are separate areas used and planned for the purpose of clean energy development, like wind and solar generation facilities.(NAN)

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