As the global campaign against illegal logging and deforestation continue to gain momentum, Onuesoke Foundation has appealed to the people of Delta State, mostly those residing in the rural areas to stop illegal logging of forest and concentrate on the planting of trees.
Onuesoke Foundation is a non-profit government organization saddle with the responsibilities of promoting public-private collaboration in attending to rural and community development program by fostering sustainable development approach to challenges affecting rural communities and rural development.
The activities and broad line operations of the Foundation was defined to affect humanity and restore nature as it can best support human life in the often neglected rural communities.
Speaking in Agbarha-Otor, Ughelli South LGA, Delta State where she had gone to campaign to the indigenes of the rural community on the need to plant more trees instead of deforestation, Director of Operation of Onuesoke Foundation, Igho Pearl stated that in addition to mitigating climate change, stopping deforestation and forest degradation and supporting sustainable forest management conserves water resources and prevents flooding, reduces run-off, controls soil erosion, reduces river siltation, protects fisheries, preserves biodiversity, cultures and traditions.
She pointed out that reductions in the rate of deforestation have multiple benefits which include avoiding a huge source of carbon emissions and reducing the environmental and social problems associated with deforestation.
According her, “Globally, around 350 million people reside close to or within forests and rely on forests for their food and livelihood. Almost 60 million people, especially those living in indigenous communities, are entirely dependent on forests.
The livelihoods of 1.6 billion people depend on forests. Forests provide US$ 75–100 billion per year in goods and services. Forests are home to 80% of the world’s terrestrial biodiversity, according to the International Union of Concerned Scientists.”
Describing Illegal logging as act of inhumanity to man, Pearl explained that illegal logging lowers the price of timber worldwide, it deprives government of tax revenues they need to provide human services, it hurt businesses, the work conditions are unsafe and employees are paid slave wages.
“Thus, deforestation and poverty are locked in a harmful relationship. And it is the world’s poor whose health and livelihood suffers most. My advise is that you should leave forests standing.
Plant more trees. Reduce your use of products made from trees including paper and cardboard. Recycle the forest products that you use. Choose recycled when you do buy products made from the forest.
Demand forest products from sustainable sources and deforestation free supply chains. Avoid products that include palm oil and support organization that reforest and conserve,” she advised.
Pearl reiterated that school children can take an active role in helping to green their schools by teaming with their teachers, administrators and parents to plant trees on their school property.
“These projects pay multiple benefits by improving environmental conditions and providing multi-disciplinary learning for students of all ages.
It teaches them about plants and shows them how their efforts make an impact that they and their communities can revisit for years,” Pearl stated