Bamboo Crucial in Combating Climate Change – Envt Minister  

By Chioma Dibia

The Minister of Environment, Balarabe Lawal joined other experts on Wednesday to highlight the important role Bamboo plant plays in addressing Climate Change.

In his address on the day to mark this year’s World Bamboo Day, a day set aside to commemorate and raise awareness about the importance of this giant Grass to our social, economic and environmental survival, he said the day provides the opportunity to recognize the incredible potential and significance of the plant in our lives.

“Bamboo often referred to as the “Green gold” has been an integral part of our culture and heritage for centuries. It has proven to be a true gift of nature considering its versatility and numerous environmental and economic benefits.

“As the whole world grapples with the menace of climate change and its attendant impacts, we are by this event reminded of the immense potentials this plant holds in addressing some of these pressing challenges. Its rapid growth, strength, and adaptability make it an ideal solution for development and resources management,” the minister stated.

Speaking further, Lawal said Bamboo has the rare ability to sequester carbon dioxide and release oxygen, beyond many other plant species.

“Not only does it contribute to the preservation of our environment, it also offers opportunities for economic growth and poverty alleviation.

“It diverse applications in different sectors of the economy makes it a valuable resource for job creation and income generation,” he said.

The Minister went ahead to state the significant steps which the ministry is taking towards ensuring a greener and more sustainable future for Nigerians to include the promotion of bamboo cultivation and utilization.

“Recognizing and keeping with the Renewed Hope Agenda of the present Administration, the Ministry among other areas, is focusing on the development of the Bamboo and Rattan sectors in Nigeria, in the Ministry’s quest to increase forest and ecosystem conservation, enhance livelihoods, access to markets and value chain development,” the minister said.

The Minister said the country’s environment ministry has also stepped up collaborations with local and international partners including the international Bamboo and Rattan organization (INBAR).

“INBAR has been of tremendous benefits to the country particularly in the areas of training and capacity building support centered on the development and promotion of the bamboo value chain in combating climate change and contributing to social wellbeing and national economic development,” Lawal said.  

With shorter gestation period, Bamboo boasts of shared and greater environmental and socio-economic potential including for construction and as industrial raw materials.

The minister said Nigeria is looking to take advantage of the Sahelian Institute for bamboo Research and Entrepreneurial Development (SIBRED) as the first bamboo research institute outside Asia.

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