Stakeholders in the environment sector on Tuesday, in Abuja, collaborated on migrating climate change through the restoration of mangroves in the country.

The stakeholders made this assertion at the inauguration of the UK PACT project on the integrated management of the mangrove ecosystem and the expansion of social protection for fisheries and forest dependents in the coastal communities of Cross Rivers.
The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Representative in Nigeria, Mr. Koffy Kouacou, said that it was expedient to save the mangrove ecosystem in Nigeria and the coastal area of Cross River, most especially to impact livelihoods.

Kouacou stated that considering the negative impact of deforestation on the climate every day, especially through firewood and timber collection, which causes air pollution, the mangrove ecosystem needed restoration.

He expressed appreciation to the UK PACT, and the Federal Ministry of Environment Cross River Government for their support in the project.

He assured support for environmental projects and commended stakeholders for their collaboration in efforts to restore the mangrove ecosystem.

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Earlier, Dr. Salisu Dahiru, Director-General of the National Council on Climate Change (NCCC), in an address of welcome, said that mangroves played an important role in carbon sequestration, providing livelihoods and maintaining emissions reduction targets.

“The project aligns with one of the mitigation options it also helps in climate adaptations this also enhanced institutional strengthening in deepening research adaptive management practices and collaboration amongst stakeholders.”

Dahiru noted that both FAO and the UK PACT were joint projects to harness the less harnessed resources critical to Nigeria’s determined contribution and commended their efforts to climate mitigation in Nigeria.

Martine Sobey, Climate Change and Nature Team Leader of the British High Commission, and a representative of the UK PACT in Nigeria, said that it was pertinent to provide forest protection for communities against erosion, desert encroachment, and deforestation.

The Commissioner for Agriculture and Irrigation Development Cross River, Mr. Johnson Ebokpo, expressed willingness to restore mangroves in the state and assured continued support of the government.