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Ministry plans youth regional climate change innovation hub

By Chinedum Uwaegbulam (Lagos) and Auwal Ahmad (Gombe)
09 September 2019   |   4:10 am
Plans are afoot to establish youth regional climate change innovation hub that would serve as a platform for continuing interface of young people with government and development partners...

[File] Director, Climate Change Department, Federal Ministry of Environment, Dr. Peter Tarfa

Plans are afoot to establish youth regional climate change innovation hub that would serve as a platform for continuing interface of young people with government and development partners for the implementation of practical solutions in the country.

Coming on the heels of the completion of regional youth climate incubation regional hub in five zones of the country: South – South (Rivers State), South –West (Oyo State), North West Zone (Kano State), South East Zone (Imo State), North Central Zone (Nasarawa State) and North East Zone (Gombe State), which drew participants from all the states in the federation.

The Federal Ministry of Environment in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) hosted the programme aimed to harvest and collate climate-focused innovations as well as ideas that can be showcased at the UN Climate Action Summit this month in New York.

Specifically, in the South West and and North East Zones, the youths presented ideas that would accelerate climate change actions, which were creative and at the same time specific, measurable, achievable, bankable, realistic and time bound.

Speaking at the closing ceremonies, the Director, Department of Climate Change (DCC), Dr. Peter Tarfa, said that the outcomes would be integrated into the working document reflecting Nigeria’s current efforts to address climate change.

Tarfa expressed hope that the event would be carried out annually, assuring them of that they will be included in the mailing list of the department with a view to inform them on the outcomes of this program as well as to notify them about subsequent programs relating to climate change in the country.

“We are going to have the National Climate Innovation event soon in Abuja, which will be a high-level gathering. We will bring some of these youth-led ideas to the table, so I expect to see good implementable solutions to climate change that we can replicate in the nation,” Tarfa said.

He also assured the participants that the Minister of Environment and the Minister of State for Environment are willing to interact with young people on climate actions.

In Ibadan, Oyo State, while welcoming the participants to the event, the Federal Ministry of Environment through DCC, charged the participants on the imperativeness of this event, as climate and climate change have become an issue of global concern particularly in Third World countries like Nigeria.

A Senior Scientific Officer at the DCC, Sa’adatu Gambo, who represented the Federal Ministry of Environment also mentioned that DCC is the country’s focal point for the United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and that the department is always eager and ready to welcome creative ideas from young people on how to solve problems of climate change which has become a serious global threat.

The Oyo State Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources, represented by a Director in the ministry, Mrs. Modupe Adeleye eulogized the youth for participating in increasing debate on climate change and emphasised Oyo state was open to partner with stakeholders with brilliant ideas on climate change.

Facilitated by TalentPlus Resources International, the Executive Director, Aderonke Eseka explained that the innovation hub would afforded youths the opportunity to share their ideas.

Also, in Gombe, the Permanent Secretary,   Gombe State Ministry of Environment and Forest Resources, Malam Nasiru Bunu said that the threat of the climate change are mostly caused by mismanagement of natural resources which led to the attendant of consequences on life and the economy.

He called on Youths in North-East region involved in the fight against climate change, to analyse the effects of the Boko Haram insurgency on the ecology of the region, particularly as it concerns the increase in deforestation, the effectiveness of the anti-desertification measures being put in place and military activities contribute to climate change.

Bunu also underscored the need to protect the environment from forms of degradation, especially those brought about by the activities of man.