There have been consistent galvanised efforts by the global community towards ecosystem restoration since the declaration of 2021–2030 as the Decade of Ecosystem Restoration by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). In line with this, the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) through the instrumentality of its advocacy lecture instituted in memory of its founder, late Chief Shafi Lawal Edu, will gather over 2,000 youths to charge them on the need to take the lead in the campaign, process and activities leading to the restoration of the ecosystem.
These efforts are aimed at saving a world that is in a dire need of ecosystem restoration and threatened by climate change.
The 19th edition of NCF’s annual lecture tagged Chief S.L. Edu Memorial Lecture with the theme: “Youth and Ecosystem Restoration” is a hybrid event scheduled to hold on Thursday, August 12, 2021 at the Lekki Conservation Centre (LCC) in Lagos.
The continental acclaimed youth activist, Ms. Simangele Msweli, Senior Manager, Youth Leadership Programme, African Wildlife Foundation, will be the Guest Speaker, while Chief Philip Asiodu, President, Board of Trustees, NCF will chair the event. The lecture will also feature three youth conservationists, who were among the Top 100 Young African Conservation Leaders, spotlighted in 2020. They include Omobola Eko, Abubakar Muhammad and Nella Duke Ekpeyong.
Ecosystem restoration is the practice of renewing and restoring degraded, damaged, or destroyed ecosystems and habitats in the environment by active human intervention and action. Example of human intervention and actions employed towards ecosystem restoration include planting trees, cleaning up wetlands and river banks, or just leaving a swathe of natural land to recover. Ecosystem restoration can help to combat climate change and prevent a mass extinction of species and end poverty.
Chief S.L. Edu Memorial Lecture is an annual event organised by NCF in collaboration with the family of late Chief S.L. Edu and supported by Chevron Nigeria Limited. The lecture series aims at bringing environmental issues to the front burner of national discourse while articulating solutions through speakers from diverse backgrounds.
The event equally serves to award scholarship grants to two PhD students whose research works are in the field of environmental sciences in any Nigerian universities. The grant is sponsored by Chevron Nigeria Limited and seek to promote research works in nature conservation, biodiversity preservation, environmental management and sustainable livelihood.
Some of the topics and guest speakers in its 18-year history include: “A Quiet Revolution: Faith and the Environment” – lecture delivered by Mr. Martin Palmer, Alliance for Religions & Conservation, UK; “Environmental Management: Imperatives in Africa’s Sustainable Development” – lecture delivered by Prof. Charles Okidi, University of Kenya; “Environmental Policy and Performance: a Sustainable Development Agenda for Nigeria” – lecture delivered by Chief (Dr.) Ernest Shonekan, former Head of Interim Government in Nigeria; “Decline of Vultures: Consequences of Human Health and the Economy” – lecture delivered by Ms. Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations (former Minister of Environment, Nigeria); and “The role of Traditional Leaders in Protecting and Restoring the Nigerian Environment” – lecture delivered by His Eminence, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar CFR, the Sultan of Sokoto.
The NCF is the foremost environmental non-governmental organisation in Nigeria, dedicated to nature conservation and biodiversity resources management. It has been the vanguard in conservation efforts for over four decades in Nigeria and Africa.