By Isaac Olamikan, Senior Correspondent, Benin
Environmental Rights Action /Friends of the Earth in Nigeria (ERA/FoEN) recently embarked on a one day Youth Training Workshop on Environmental Degradation, Field Monitoring and Reporting Skills Acquisition in Benin City.
In his welcome remark and project overview, the Executive Director ERA/FoEN, Godwin Uyi Ojo, told the about 200 participants that Nigeria has a lot of environmental problems which include deforestation, gas flaring, oil spillage, flooding, climate change, waste bush burning and gully erosion among many others.
He said almost all the environment in the Niger Delta has been destroyed and the government is not showing interest in sueing the oil companies involved with a view of bringing them to book.
He disclosed that the role of his organisation is to help in dealing with all the hazards associated with oil prospecting and production in the communities. According to him environmental
problems which are interconnected and harmful are caused by human beings.
On Environmental Field Monitoring and Reporting, Ojo said that it is knowledge based. He said that it involves measuring the magnitude of the impact, the level of impact, the human impact and capturing the voices of the people impacted.
Ojo said in monitoring you must measure the magnitude of the environment you want to research. He said the key elements of the research work is authenticity, personal observation and the testimony recorded in the field. He maintained that most field work must be accompanied by photographs to tell the situation on ground.
A resource person, John Isa, Managing Director of Comp-Pros Systems Limited, while talking about ‘Environmental Protection and Challenges of Waste Management in Edo State, said population is one of the greatest factors causing environmental degradation. He stressed that for human beings to stay alive they must create waste.
He adviced that waste should be separated to enable the waste manager know which waste is good for recycling, adding that waste management is a capital intensive process.