Following the celebration of the World Environment day on June 5th, the visit of the United Nations Environment Programme Executive Director, Erik Solheim, to the Minister of State for Environment in Abuja, is a sign of tidings for all things environment in Nigeria.
In a statement, the Minister, Ibrahim Usman Jubril, noted that different parts of the country were dealing with their own peculiar problems; from deforestation, erosion, flooding and even lead poisoning, but the government was committed to addressing these issues through relevant stakeholder partnerships. Erik Solheim in his remarks noted that development cannot be separated from the environment because no society can change if the environment is not being kept clean.
Using India as an example in commitment to proper waste management, he implored the Federal Government to channel more energy to the management (reduce, reuse and recycling) of plastic waste in Nigeria, especially in the areas of engaging the local communities in the work of environmental conservation.
He said “Waste management is one course UNEP is glad to support, we want to work with you on that, there is no limit to what we can achieve if we work together, the big environment issues can be addressed.” He went to add that the organization can help provide modern technology that ensures that more work is done at a time as this will create so many diverse opportunities in our determination to conserve our environment.
As complex as the India economic landscape is, they are committed to a zero plastic threshold by 2020. Do you think Nigeria and other African countries can do the same? Share your thoughts on this and let’s have a discussion.