Environmentalists have reiterated the need to safeguarding Coastal areas and the people that inhabit them from the effect of climate change.
At the 2014 Annual Walk For Nature in Lagos, organized by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation in collaboration with the Lagos State Government and sponsored by Chevron Nigeria Limited, Fidelity Bank Plc, 7Up Bottling Company Plc, UACN Property Development Company Plc, Chemical and Allied Product Plc and SAPETRO Nigeria Limited, participants call for actions aimed at sensitizing the populace to the dangers of Climate Change and what they can do as individuals to reduce their exposure to its effects is part of the strategy for mitigating the damaging consequences of Climate Change.
Speaking at the end of about 45 minutes early morning walk, on the theme of the event "Small Island Developing States", the President of the Nigerian Conservation Foundation, Izoma Philip Asiodu said that small island states are more prone to the damaging effects of a warming planet than those that are in the hinterland. The impacts of a rising sea level mean the loss of lives and properties for many people living on small islands.
According to him, the importance of Lagos as a coastal city and as the economic nerve Centre of the most populous country in Africa makes it imperative to pay attention to any potential threat to the economy of the State. The Walk aimed at raising the level of awareness of Lagosians to what may be done to alleviate their inevitable exposure.
"The fact is that the whole planet is under stress, not only from Climate Change but from rapid population growth, and increased consumption demands due to rising standards of living. Development plans must therefore be made as eco-friendly as possible to ensure sustainability".
Governor of Lagos State, Babatunde Fashola, represented by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Environment said that the theme of the event was of great importance to Lagos because of her peculiarity as a Coastal State. Lagos shares remarkable similarities with some of the renowned Small Island Developing State such as Trinidad and Tobago, Toga, Samoa and Suriname. These communities and cities face myriad of environmental challenges including flooding, waste management, pollution, degradation of forests and coastal habitats as well as loss of aquatic biodiversity.
"Today provides us another unique opportunity to celebrate our environment and draw people's attention towards developing the capacity of our coastal cities to respond efficiently to the environmental challenges posed by its littoral nature".
Governor Fashola said further that climates around the world bring about changes in the economy, how we live and where we live. Climate change affects our totality and entire being. The world watches in wonder how the beautiful coastal terrain of world's coastal cities change and disappear while their potential for tourism and economic benefits are changing consequent upon detrimental human activities. "To a large extent, it behooves on us as a people and nation to form a global partnership to care for the earth.