Kaduna Assembly Halts Tree Felling Amidst Environmental Outcry

Zakari Haruna - Kaduna

Following fervent opposition from scientists, academics, and environmental advocates, the Kaduna State House of Assembly has suspended the cutting down of historic trees within its premises. 

This decision was prompted by widespread criticism of the destruction of vital green spaces crucial for local biodiversity and climate resilience.

Over the past few days, science and environment journalists have witnessed the alarming destruction of trees within the Kaduna State House of Assembly complex. This action has led to the displacement of seasonal migratory birds that have relied on these trees for shelter for many years.

According to surveys conducted by science journalists, more than 20 large trees were felled, prompting protests from affected bird populations. Migratory birds, known for their extensive travels, expressed distress as their habitats were destroyed, leaving newborns vulnerable to harm.

Renowned environmentalist Professor Yahaya Saleh Ibrahim played a pivotal role in rallying stakeholders to intervene and halt the tree felling. His efforts led to apologies from the Kaduna State Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources and the House of Assembly for the environmental damage caused.

During a technical review meeting on the draft climate change policy document for Kaduna State, stakeholders criticized the assembly's actions, stressing the vital role of trees in mitigating climate change and supporting local ecosystems.

Each felled tree was meticulously documented, highlighting its botanical significance and historical nurturing. Environmental enthusiasts, including scientists and historians, emphasized the importance of preserving these green spaces to maintain air quality and biodiversity.

Mr. Usman Stingo, Chairman of the Assembly’s Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, acknowledged the regrettable decision to fell the trees but pledged to replant and nurture them. He emphasized the need for stringent approval processes for tree felling to safeguard the environment.

Similarly, Mr. Abubakar Buba, the state’s Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources, underscored the ministry's commitment to reforestation efforts. 

He announced plans to plant 20,000 trees across the state in 2024 to mitigate the effects of climate change.

Detailed assessments by environmental experts revealed that over 20 mature trees were earmarked for removal, prompting outcry from local and migratory bird populations. Professor Yahaya Saleh Ibrahim's intervention led to public apologies from both the Kaduna State Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources and the House of Assembly for the environmental harm caused.

During a recent climate policy review meeting, stakeholders expressed dismay over the assembly's actions, highlighting the irreplaceable ecological services provided by trees. Trees not only absorb carbon dioxide but also regulate local temperatures and support diverse wildlife populations.

The decision to suspend tree felling reflects a growing consensus among policymakers and environmentalists on the urgent need to prioritize nature-based solutions to climate change. Collaboration between government, civil society, and environmental advocates will be crucial in safeguarding ecosystems and mitigating climate change impacts.

In conclusion, the decision to suspend tree cutting and initiate reforestation efforts represents a significant step towards sustainable environmental management in Kaduna State. Collaboration between stakeholders will be essential in safeguarding ecosystems and building a resilient future for all.

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