Samuel Bello, Abuja

The Federal Government has said the ability to sustain mankind and focus on ensuring environmental protection and conservation of natural resources for sustainable development has been severely impacted by a number of human made factors.

Speaking at the 2019 World Wildlife Day celebration in Abuja, Minister of Environment, Hassan Zarma, said unregulated and poorly managed human activities including unregulated fisheries, pollution and climate change are major factors.

He emphasized that it is imperative for Nigerians to work in harmony with the marine ecosystem for the future generations, especially people and communities dependent on God-given resources that exists below water.

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Zarma said “the oceans regulate our climate, produce half the oxygen we breathe, provide nourishment for over three billion people and absorb 30 percent of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere and fully 90 percent of the heat from climate change.”

The minister added that efforts to clean up plastic wastes that are degrading water bodies and considerably reducing their productivity capacity is being addressed through an appropriate programme.

“We are guided by the 2016-2020 environment sector strategic plan, which seeks to support the government and people of Nigeria in delivering economic, social and environmental change by realigning the environment sector with key priorities of government and desires of the people,” Zarma said.