By Chuks Oyema-Aziken
The Minister of State for Environment, Chief Sharon Ikeazor has stressed the need to adopt modern technologies inherent in geospatial science to tackle biodiversity loss and climate change issues in the country.
A press release signed by the Director Press and Public Relations, Federal Ministry of Environment, Saghir el Mohammed said the Minister
made the call recently during a virtual meeting with members of the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) based in Geneva, Switzerland.
The press release said the Minister expressed interest that geospatial sciences can help fight climate change and biodiversity loss, particularly in the Lake Chad Basin and Coastal Regions of Nigeria.
She therefore “urged the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Climate Change to work closely with the National Earth Observation (NEO) team to enable them carry out their assignment more successfully, as the data and knowledge derived from earth observations will help government plan and respond to climate crises in various sectors. She was glad to learn that the National Space Research & Development Agency (NASDRA) in Nigeria is already working with GEO.
“According to her, the NEO team will help to proffer lasting solution to the inter-linked climate change crises, while also enabling the detection of early warning for crop failure, thereby enhancing improvement of livelihoods and food security.
“She emphasized that Geospatial science for biodiversity and ocean are very important especially in a coastal country like Nigeria”, and reaffirmed her commitment towards youths playing a key role in climate actions.
“It is the young ones who will take advantage of these technologies, have access to authentic data and job opportunities in the country.
“In his remark, Mr. Steven Ramage, Head of External Relations for the GEO, said the key focus of their organisation include agriculture, biodiversity, cities, climate action, data, forestry, land degradation neutrality, oceans (GEO Blue Planet), water sustainability and disaster risks reduction.
“Similarly, Catherine Nakaleme of AfriGEEO, in her contribution noted that the Digital Earth Africa will assist countries in the continent to realise the potential for Earth Observation, towards guaranteeing sustainable development.
“According to Nakaleme, Digital Earth Africa has the capacity to provide a unique continental scale analysis and factual data for operational purposes and tracking of changes across Africa, on soil and coastal erosion, forest and desert development, water quality and changes to human settlements.
“The GEO is a partnership of more than 100 national governments and in excess of 100 Participating Organizations under the UN that envisions a future where decisions and actions for the benefit of humankind are informed by coordinated, comprehensive and sustained Earth observations.”