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Charcoal producers pledge to address high forests deficit in Nigeria

The National Association of Charcoal Producers, Dealers, Exporters and Afforestation of Nigeria (NACPDEAN) says it is committed to sustainable forest development that would address high forests deficit in Nigeria.


President of the association, Mr Babatunde Edu, said this on Saturday, June 17, 2023, in Kaduna during the inauguration of Kaduna State officials of the association.

He said that their focus is to ensure planting of trees and establishment of more private indigenous plantations of economic trees.

Edu added that the association was also working towards creation of industrial alternative charcoal that is not made from wood.

According to him, though Nigeria has earned as much as over $73.2 million in charcoal trade as at 2019, their focus is to ensure sustainable environment.

The association also held sensitisation on its activities that centred around the theme: “Advocacy on Sustainable Afforestation and Reforestation for Kaduna State Posterity”.

Edu said NACPDEAN was established to streamline the sector and ensure orderliness in the conduct of charcoal commodity business within and outside the country.

“It is important to inform you of the high level of forests deficit gaps in Nigeria according to the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA).

“Reports from the Global Forest Watch indicates that, between 2001 and 2021, Nigeria lost 1.14 million hectares of trees cover as a result of the several activities like industrial agriculture and food, which takes 80% of deforestation.

“Logging, petroleum exploration, urban development, forest burning, grazing and other activities are involved in deforestation as well.”

He explained that from 1960 to early 70s when attention was paid to the sector, export of wood products and agricultural commodities provided more than 70% of the country’s GDP.

“Based on the above point, NACPDEAN was formed to enforce compliance of tree planting in the charcoal sector,” Edu said.

He said that the global wood charcoal market revenue amounted to $24.2 billion in 2018, and has remained relatively unchanged since then.

“In production as at  2019, Nigeria is ranked the second largest producer in the world with 4.5 million tonnes after Brazil with 5.5 million tonnes, and first in Africa, with a combined 28% share of global production by FAO,” he added.

According to him, the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) ranked Nigeria 8th in global wood charcoal consumption in 2019.

Edu believes that, with proper planning, Nigeria will earn much foreign exchange from the global charcoal market, without hurting the environment.

“The main objective of the association is for the nation to have abundant forest cover and sustainable forest development,” he added.

On the inauguration of new officials of the association for Kaduna State, Edu said the task before them was to curb deforestation.

“Our plan in Kaduna state is to put in more efforts in curbing forest crime, deforestation, and achieving afforestation with adequate revenue earnings.

“And boosting the sub-sector to yield more employment and empowerment for our members, stakeholders, communities, and the government of Kaduna state,” the association president said.

In his remarks, the Secretary-General of NACPDEAN, Mr Kngsley Amadi, appealed to the Kaduna State Government to facilitate compliance of stakeholders to afforestation policy.

Amadi urged the government to provide the association with land across the state for its afforestation and reforestation project.

He said the government should also enforce compliance to Afforestation Pass and Right.

This, he said, “is a compulsory requisite for charcoal stakeholders, to champion sustainability drive and adherence to the newly revised charcoal guidelines”.

In his remarks, Kaduna State Governor, Sen. Uba Sani, represented by the state Director of Forestry, Mr Hassan Chumbi, urged them to embrace modern ways of producing charcoal without degrading the environment.

He said that the government would partner with them to ensure the success their afforestation and reforestation project in the state.

The 24-member Executive Council of NACPDEAN in Kaduna State is headed by Mr Dauda Ussaini, while Mr Jacob Chumbi will serve as Secretary.

Others include Lauwali Abdullahi, Assistant State Coordinator; Sani Musa, Treasurer; Adamu Abdullahi, Organising Secretary; and Gadafi Tagwaye, Financial Secretary, among others.

By Mohammed Tijjani

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