Environmentalists canvass enforcement of ecosystem laws

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The environmental stakeholders made the call during a zoom programme on the sidelines of the World Biodiversity Day celebration in Lagos.

The programme, organised by the Lagos State Ministry of Environment and Water Resources (MOE & WR), is themed: “Our Solutions Are in The Nature”.

Ecosystem is a community of living organisms in conjunction with the non-living components of their environment interacting as a system.

Dr Fisayo Jerome of the Nigerian Institute for Oceanography and Marine Research (NIOMR) urged the Lagos State Government to enforce environmental laws to sustain the environment
Jerome, who spoke on the topic: “Role of Nature in Ecosystems Sustainability”, called for the enforcement of environmental laws to protect endangered species in our oceans and rivers.
According to her, all sectors should maintain the sustainability of the ecosystem through continuous awareness.

She said there was need for man as a specie to consider the need for the sustainability of the ecosystem.

“Ocean covers about 97.5 per cent of the world, while the remaining percentage represents land.
“Ocean is the primary regulator of the global climate, while the Nigeria’s maritime zone is also an ecosystem, as the country has a stretch of 850 kilometres of coastline totaling 200,000 nautical miles.
“In those areas, fishing has been permitted on a small scale, while beyond is the non-exclusive economic zone.

“Here is where we have the non-living resources such as crude oil and ad hoc,” Jerome said.
She described Nigeria as the highest exporter of crude oil and largest ad hoc of the ecosystem in Africa and third in the world.

Mr Adedamola Ogunsesan, Project Manager, Lekki Conservation Foundation (LCF), said that wetland had more value than a new building.

He spoke on the topic: “Conserving Wetland for Sustainability of Urban Livelihood”.
Ogunsesan said there was the need to integrate urban development, to ensure that wetland provides solutions to people in the environment.

He urged the Federal and State Governments to develop a master plan for wetlands in the country.
Mrs Belinda Odeneye, Permanent Secretary, MOE & WR, said the state government was committed to achieving a Cleaner Lagos in terms of supporting ecotourism.

She said the state government was encouraging local tourism and biodiversification to ensure greener and healthier environment.

“If we destroy our environment, we are destroying ourselves,” the permanent secretary said.

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