Concern mounts over increasing impact of population on environment

Nigerians crowd population…PHOTO: LUCY LADIDI ELUKPO


Following fears of terrible impacts of population growth on environmental resources, the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) and the Lagos state government have called for urgent actions that would help strike a balance between the two for human survival.

The Director-General of the NCF, Dr. Muhtari Aminu-Kano who spoke during an event to mark the 2019 world population day organised by the foundation and titled, “Population and sustainability in Nigeria and beyond” advised the federal government to intensify efforts on the education of the girl-child on limiting the number of children they will have in their lifetime.

According to the United Nations population report, 2019, by 2020 China may become the most populous country in the world, followed by India, the United States, and Nigeria. The population demographics of Nigeria, in particular, indicate that the fertility rate of Nigerian women is 5.3 children in her lifetime and only 12per cent of married women use any modern contraceptive method-Nigerian demographic health survey 2018.

Aminu-Kano charged the three levels of government to bring the dividends of democracy to the people, which he said, would help to make an informed decision about their life as well as gives them options. He reinforced the importance of family planning to stemming the worsening impact of overpopulation in the country.

The Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Environment, Abiodun Bamgboye who raised concerns on impact of increasing population on Nigeria and Lagos in particular, environment urged authorities to decentralize industrialization as statistics from the Lagos State Bureau of Statistic shows that the population figure for Lagos is now over 25.6 million blaming it on people who relocate in search of better life in the city.

According to him, an increase in the human population accounts for pressure on the natural resources, ecology, wellbeing, and wellness of the environment. He noted that the state government must deploy smart technology, which he observed as a technical measure in sustaining its mega-city status.

In his contributions, the Director, Population Matters, Mr. Robin Maynard said there should the use of modern technology to balance up the population growth rate in harmony with the planet and the environment for human and future generations to live sustainably. He explains, “We need education; medicine and family planning to enable us to live sustainably and leave the right footprint on the earth. The religious leaders have a powerful part to play in talking about family planning to their congregation.”

Those in developed countries need to reduce their consumption patterns and harmonize a balance and support those in the developing countries to live differently and strike a balance with the environment. The younger generations should educate and challenge political leaders to do the right thing and make better choices for the sustainability of the environment.”

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