Saturday, June 13, 2009

Combatting desertification in Nigeria

Nasiru Idris Medugu in the Daily Trust (Nigeria): Other causes of desertification in Nigeria through anthropogenic factor are: 1) wood extraction for fuel and construction, 2) bush burning, 3) grazing, 4) cultivation of marginal land, 5) faulty irrigation management and 6) Poverty. In Nigeria, drought and desertification have severe impact on the following:

….Desertification and drought have been internationally recognized as environmental problems with devastating social and economic impacts. A lot of policies and programmes have been laid down to tackle the problem however, there exists a gap in policy formulation and strategies in combating drought and desertification in Nigeria, especially the treatment of desertification concern as a sectoral issue rather than an integrated, holistic issue having relevance with other sectors. The article also noted the inability of the government to provide adequate funds for desertification control and has emphasized the need for the review and streamlining of legislations targeted at arresting the spread of desert conditions in the country. Finally, the author emphasized that national policy for drought and desertification should ensure sustainable development, based on proper management of human-environment interactions in the affected areas. Such a policy must balance environmental issues within the society-environmental systems in the areas…

1 comment:

SteveK said...

The largest and most neglected cause of desertification in Nigeria and the rest of Africa is the gigantic dessication machine Typha (cattails). Often mistaken for a sign of wetland health, Typha and other aquatic weeds can systematically destroy a whole river system, sucking it dry and silting it in until it is dry grassland. Typha participates in many other problems, too. The way to control aquatic weeds like Typha is to harvest them for their energy content. Weeds and wastes are the sane source for biofuels. The energy market is insatiable, which is just what is needed to match the terrifying renewability of weeds as a resource. The deserts must be fought in the wetlands, and the wetlands will go back to watering the drylands.