A Call For Action: Remedying The Effects of Global Warming In Nigeria

Global warming or climate change is referred to a change which is directly and indirectly attributed to human anthropogenic activities that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which are in addition to natural climate variably observed over comparable period of time. When there are natural disorders in the ozone layer either due to human or non-human factors, there will definitely be global warming. Over some decades now, the issue of global climate change due to greenhouse effects poses threat to human, natural systems and resources through high temperature, acidic rain, flooding and susceptibility to pests and diseases outbreak hence making life difficult to live. Anthropogenic activities such as the burning of coal, oil and natural gas as well as deforestation and various industrial practices are altering the composition of the atmosphere and contributing to climate change.

What We Should Know About Global Warming In Nigeria

According to a recent research on global warming, it was found that Nigeria contributes significantly to the greenhouse emissions especially land use change and forestry sector generated about 40% of gross national emissions into the atmosphere. Also sources of CO2 emission are gas flaring and transportation which accounts for 20% and 30%. Global warming has increase the average temperature of planet earth’s atmosphere. This comes from the release of CO2 and other greenhouse gases such as CH4, N2O, CO and H2O into the atmosphere. These gases are helpful to man by increasing industrial activities, producing CO agricultural practices, products of aerosols and CFCs, but they hold the potential to be harmful in large amounts by our activities. The release and increase of these gases causes earth warming and keeps the earth warmer than it would otherwise be. Just a few degree Celsius of warming can cause major problems as rise in sea level, precipitation patterns shift, wind and ocean current, submerging coastal cities and some species go extinct as climate changes faster than they can adapt. Recent studies have rather indicated that the climate cannot and should not be regarded as constant. The climate is always changing on a variety of time scales. There would be an intending consequence on human if urgent action is not taken against the steady rise in global surface temperature and gradual rise in sea level in Nigeria.

Man’s Contribution To Global Warming

Efforts have not been efficiently made to involve all and Sundry in the knowledge about activities carried out that brings about ozone layer depletion. People awareness level about this phenomenon is drastically low. The sun gives out different kinds of energy radiation. These include: heat, which keeps the earth and all things on Earth warm; visible light, which enables us to see and provides energy for photosynthesis; ultraviolet rays, which are not visible to human beings and are very harmful. Ultraviolet rays have very high energy. They can cause skin cancer if they strike the bodies of human beings and other animals. They can also cause harmful changes in plants. The importance of the ozone layer is that it absorbs ultraviolet rays, which are emitted by the sun as they pass through the atmosphere, thus shielding human beings and other living things from harmful ultraviolet rays.  Scientific studies of the atmosphere show that the ozone layer has been gradually depleting over the past few decades.

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The main cause of the destruction of the ozone layer is considered to be the accumulation in the atmosphere of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) the chemicals used for refrigeration as propellants in aerosols and in other manufacturing processes. The depletion of the ozone layer has harmful effects, some of which are known while others are yet unknown. As the ozone layer is depleted, there will be an increase in skin cancer among humans and other damages. Cancer may cause death. The ultraviolet rays may also kill or harm small water plants, which form the beginning of food chains for aquatic plants are destroyed, fish and important food produce will become scarce.

In a recent study it was stated that the most likely effect of global warming in Nigeria is on the water supply-demands system, in Lagos State Metropolitan area for instance, the impacts of climate change will cause rise in the sea level thereby would include damages and losses due to flood, erosion, inundations, salt level rise on ground H2O resources in the area. It can also lead to loss of vegetation and possible displacement of people. Another likely consequence of the effect of climate change and sea level rise on water resource systems in the Lagos area is the possible alteration of the characteristics of the hydrological systems with serious consequences on the availability of water resources in the area. Already more than half of the population in the metropolis could be subjected to further stress as a result of the likely negatives impacts of climate change and rise in sea level on ground water resources in the area.  Lagos State consists of large areas of lowland vulnerable to rise in sea level. This is particularly so because the State is generally characterized by low lying area mostly below 5 metres. The summary of the study shows that if adequate response measures are not taken, considerable physical, ecological and socioeconomic losses would be incurred.

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How To Remedy This Situation…

Local communities and individuals should undergo thorough orientation on the future damage that might occur to our oncoming generation. However, this requires a well-defined concerted effort from the government, professional bodies, Academia and all stakeholders. The process of improving electricity supply through Gas should be accelerated in order to minimize the use of power generators whose exhaust emission also contributes to CO2 pollution. Weather and climate change to large extent control agricultural practices including plant growing, length of growing season and the productivity of plants and animals. The most critical factors in trend of agricultural production is rainfall presently food production has dropped by over 60% in the northern part of Nigeria.

Since humanity is altering the concentration of these greenhouse gases and aerosols, both of which influence, and are influenced by climate, it has become very significant to balance the forces that determine the earth climate making it a home for humanity. The environmental problems that have arisen in Nigeria need a preliminary measure to prevent future damages to global warming. All stakeholder needs to have high level of awareness on the adverse impact of climate change on all facet of our living.

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