L-R, Executive Director, Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria (FRIN), Prof. Solomon Badejo, Representative of the Vice-Chancellor, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Development), Prof. Segun Lagoke, Permanent Secretary Ogun State Ministy of Forestry, Mr. Oluseyi Banjoko and the Acting Librarian, Dr (Mrs) Mulikat Salaam
The Federal Ministry of Environment in conjunction with the FMENV/UNAAB Linkage Centre for Forest Conservation and Biodiversity of the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, has organised a Lecture, titled: Forest: Nature at Your Service, to commemorate the 2011 World Environment Day.
Speaking at the occasion, the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Oluwafemi Olaiya Balogun, said forests, both natural and man-made are indispensable providers of life’s basic essentials, required for the sustenance of the living race.
The Vice-Chancellor who was represented by his Deputy, in charge of Development, Professor Segun Lagoke, said this year’s celebration was very apt, considering the urgent need to re-focus attention on the preservation and sustenance of the forests with their attendant resources.
The Lecture, delivered by the Executive Director of Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria (FRIN), Ibadan, Prof. Solomon Badejo, focused on the collective denigration of the environment through indiscriminate felling of trees.
Prof. Badejo attributed the causes of climate change to include, shifting cultivation practice and bush burning, with an observation that agriculture was a major culprit, as it contributes about 20 per cent of green house gases, responsible for global warming.
According to him, farming activities release substantial amount of gases, such as methane and nitrous oxide. “Methane is produced by the decomposition of organic matter, particularly, in the soil of flooded rice fields and by the digestive process of ruminant livestock such as cattle, sheep and goats”, he added.
The Lecturer asserted that converting forests for agricultural uses, emit nitrous oxide, while carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels as well as deforestation and tilling practices, stimulate climate change.
At the occasion, the Permanent Secretary, Ogun State Ministry of Forestry, Mr. Oluseyi Banjoko, lamented the state of decay caused by degradation of the environment which he said was responsible for food shortage and homelessness.
Earlier, the Director, FMENV/UNAAB Linkage Centre, Dr. M .F Adekunle, said the Lecture was aimed at promoting awareness on the need to conserve the forests as important elixir for a safe environment.