Lagos — Minister of State for Environment Barr Sharon Ikeazor has assured that the federal government will increase budgetary provision for the preservation of the nation's biodiversity.
Speaking at a two-day technical forum of Nigeria Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) held at the Nigeria Conservation Foundation (NCF) headquarters in Lagos, the minister who was represented by a Deputy Director at the ministry, Tiamiyu Sikiru, said the programme was put together to explore ways of salvaging Nigeria's biodiversity.
"Biological diversity means different species of plants and animals inter-relating in an environment. Without biodiversity, there is no growth. There can't be prosperity without the planet which consists of the biodiversity we are talking about," he said.
Also, the Director-General of NCF, Dr. Muhtari Aminu-Kano, who spoke on "Investing in Nigerian Biodiversity Richness for National Development", said the benefit of biodiversity cannot be quantified, adding that to bring about prosperity and sustainable development, there was need to protect the plant and animal species in the society.
He stressed that both human beings and animals need biodiversity to survive. "The air we breathe will not be clean without biodiversity. There are a lot more we can gain when the forest is regulated. That regulatory function also makes sure we don't get overwhelmed by diseases," he said.
According to him, there was also need for every stakeholder to develop "robust decisions that enhance our biodiversity."
He said the development of an action plan and techniques on harnessing the nation's biodiversity would go a long way in enhancing the economic wellbeing of the nation. The Conservator General of the National Park Service, Ibrahim Goni, said the country was faced with a lot of challenges "in terms of biodiversity conservation," noting that most of the forests that are supposed to be haven for wild animals are being taken over.
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