The Federal Government, through the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, has urged the Nigerian youth to be more conscious of the changes in the environment and begin to make plans to tackle food insecurity and imbalances in the planet’s ecosystem.
Speaking in Abuja, at the 2022 Environment Symposium held at the National Press Centre, Radio House, the Minister of Youth, Sunday Dare who was represented by his Special Assistant on Youth and ICT, Ann Kemi Areola, said issues of climate change need to be addressed swiftly and seriously.
According to Dare, the global phenomenon of climate change, caused majorly by human activities are unbalancing the weather of the earth; the sustainability of its ecosystem; the future of humankind and the stability of the global economy.
“Nigeria is not immuned from the adverse effects of climate change. We are experiencing increases in temperature; variable rainfall; rise in sea level and flooding; drought and desertification; land degradation; more frequent extreme weather events which are affecting fresh water resources and leading to loss of biodiversity.
“Economic activities such as agriculture, fishery and forestry are also taking big hits in different locations in the country,” he revealed.
The Youth Ministry had initiated the Green Stimulus programme; a part of the Economic Sustainability Plan of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration, to raise a new breed of trained technicians with the basic and advanced knowledge in renewable energy and smart agriculture.
The renewable energy focuses on solar energy development, management and implementation while the smart agriculture component is focused on improving agricultural yield and leveraging drone technology to improve agribusiness.
All these, the Minister said, are to step up awareness which will enable the Nigerian youth make informed decisions on food choices in line with the increasing global education on the healthiest and most sustainable options while creating an enabling environment for them to continue to amplify efforts collectively and individually to restore the planet and protect lives.
Dare further highlighted that recent global priorities have centered on fighting the impacts of climate change, unemployment, poverty, gender inequality, conflict and migration, challenging the youth to mobilise themselves, join forces around the world and hold decision makers accountable.
Last year, on the National Youth Day, the Youth Ministry gave out cash awards of N500,000 each to young innovators for creating jobs in the recycling and climate change ecosystem.
Intissar Bashir, one of the awardees uses pure water sachets for interlocking tiles and another awardee Adejoke Lasisi, uses them to make clothes and shoes.