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Forestry halts climate change— Don

By Emmanuel Oluwadola

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Forests and trees play crucial roles in addressing climate change, biodiversity loss, and the emergence of new diseases while strengthening sustainable economies.

This was the submission of Professor Alaba Gbadamosi, a Silviculture and Plant Biotechnology expert, during the 22nd Inaugural Lecture at Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko.

Delivering the lecture titled: “The Earth’s Heating Mantle: Forest To The Rescue,” Prof. Gbadamosi highlighted that forests at local, regional, and global levels contribute to the earth’s ability to maintain its climate by absorbing greenhouse gases and releasing oxygen into the environment.

He said, “Forests play important ecological roles both locally and at regional levels. They avert soil erosion, enhance watershed management, and act as a water filter to replenish underground aquifers. They also serve as windbreaks and shields for buildings, and ameliorate the climate by enhancing atmospheric humidity via perspiration/evapotranspiration, which affects rainfall and temperature.”

Gbadamosi called for effective measures to halt human activities such as bush burning and deforestation among other factors predisposing the planet Earth to severe global warming.

He added that adapting forest management practices will help provide valuable ecosystem services, support local communities, and contribute to the global fight against climate change.

“Environmental deterioration is contributing to climate change, biodiversity loss, and the emergence of new diseases. Forests and trees can play crucial roles in addressing these crises and moving towards sustainable economies. Therefore, there must be an urgent halt to deforestation activities, maintenance of forests, restoration of degraded lands, expansion of agroforestry, and embracing sustainable use of forests.

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Gbadamosi further discourage the common burning of refuse, tyres, fuelwood, and debris, stressing that it emits thick black smoke into the atmosphere, causing carbon imbalance, increasing greenhouse gases, and heating the planet Earth.

He recommended that students should be encouraged to study Forestry and all its components as a profession, calling on government at the national and state levels to form a synergy towards reviving the moribund paper mills scattered all over Nigeria and stop the capital flight in the importation of pulp and paper products.

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