Govt urged to initiate projects to resuscitate extinct plants, animals
Considering their effect, the federal government has been called upon to initiate programmes aimed at sustaining growth and resuscitation of disappearing plant and animal species in the country.
Recent studies showed that 484 plants in 12 families of the 4600 plant species have continued to be at diminishing state, leading to changes in every aspect of the natural environment.
Director-General of Raw Material Research and Development Council, RMRDC, Dr. Hussaini Ibrahim, made the call in a paper to commemorate International Day of Biodiversity in Abuja. “The inherent danger in species extinction in root crops in the South and the grains in the North, and we had over 300 edible plants and out of these only about 20 are produced in commercial quantities.”
Ibrahim hoped, the celebration will come up with tangible initiatives that would assist the country eliminate the negative effects of human activities on biodiversity here. “By destroying the forests, all potential future revenues and employment that could be derived from their sustainable management for timber and non-timber products are lost.”
The director-general confirmed, “In 2002, the estimate of the benefits of biodiversity in the country was valued at over $8 billion. There are greater properties of nature waiting to be discovered for enhancement of people’s livelihoods.”
He therefore disclosed that they have set up plantation programme for the production of improved seedlings with industrial potentials and distributed to Nigerian farmers nationwide.
“In view of the role of the underdeveloped biodiversity resources in the development of people and their livelihoods, it has become imperative for the government to examine the gamut of the problems through a multidisciplinary approach,” he added.
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