By Vivian Emoni
The Nigerian Institute of Environmental Engineers (NIEE), Abuja Chapter, on Tuesday, called for effective management of the environment to avoid the spread of hazardous diseases across the country.
The Chairman of the NIEE, Abuja chapter, Mrs Lynda Elesa, said this at the 2022 Valerie Agberagba Clean, Renewable and Energy Efficiency Competition (CREEC), and Public Lecture, in Abuja.
Elesa, who would be ending her tenure as the chairman of the NIEE this week, said that the engineers had gathered about 12 schools in the FCT for environmental competition.
She said that the essence of the competition is to help the children know more about the importance of cleanliness, and part of the activities to honour the CREEC.
She said the aim of the programme is to promote the principle of science, technology, engineering and mathematics as well as helping the next generation to use their creative minds and capacity to utilise renewable energy.
She said the programme would also develop energy efficiency and proffer environmental challenges solution for environmental sustainability in the country.
“The competition with the lecture is organised by an icon in the renewable energy to equip the next generation of clean energy entrepreneur innovators.
“It is also expected that the students will be one of the environmental change makers in their communities and the country at large.
“The students are also expected to identify the environmental problems and provide solution to address the challenge,” she said.
“It is important to know that environment is an essential part of our existence and if properly managed, it can be a productive resource which can increase our economic growth not only for today, but for the generations yet unborn.
“If poorly managed, it can easily be hazardous which can cause illness to individuals.
“Due to ignorance, poverty, over population, greedy, among others, people have refused to do the right thing and don’t care about taking proper care of our environment.
“Filthy environment has cause natural disaster such as biodiversity, flood, transmission of communicable diseases and others.
“It is good for us to know that if the environment is not healthy, everything within it is in danger,” she said.
Mr Umar Jibrin, Former Secretary of Federal Capital Development Authority, said in his lecture on “Innovations for Environmental Sustainability in Nigeria,” that he has captured all aspect of environmental challenges in the country.
Jibrin, also a guest speaker, said that environmental degradation has been a global problem, adding that a lot has to be done to tackle the challenges.
“The lecture captured all the matters of flooding, solid waste management challenges, issues on lack of adequate water supply which has been taken care of.
“We need to actualise the solid waste management and other challenges. This can only be possible, if other private sectors can join to ensure that we tackle the issues,” he said.
And the General Manager, Renewable Energy and initiator of the CREEC, Mrs Valerie Agberagba, said that the engineers organised programmes for the students to teach them the importance of renewable energy.
“There are a lot of talents from the younger generation, so the competitions will go along way to tackle environmental challenges in the country.
“The workshops and seminars, organised for the students, will expose them to what this technologies are,” she said.
The National Chairman of the NIEE, Mr Sesan Odukoya, said that environmental challenges have brought about the Valerie Agberagba initiative.
According to him, innovation placed a key development to increase and upgrade businesses and technologies.
“Innovation can as well stand as a new idea and knowledge. Renewable energy, power, among others, are major sources of energy that promote development in the country,” he said.
The Executive Director, (Network), Niger Delta Power Holding Company Ltd., Mr Ife Oyedele, said that a lot of work has being done to fund renewable energy in Nigeria.
“Government is trying its best to ensure that renewable energy is sustained.
“The private sectors should support the government to effectively build the growth of renewable energy in the country.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that about 12 students from various schools in the FCT, participated in the environmental Sustainable competition.
Government Junior Secondary School, Area 11, took the first position and was awarded N200,000, while Junior Secondary School, Kwali, took second and was given N150,000, the third position went to JSS, Chukuku, which was awarded N100,000.
Miss Anumkwen Wandermum, from JSS, area 11, who spoke on behalf of other students said that she was excited for the competition and appreciated the NIEE for giving them the opportunity.
Agberagba said the money was for each of the students that participated at the competition. (NAN)