The National Coordinator, Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project NEWMAP, Salisu Dahiru, has said that Nigeria ranks the highest with deforestation rate in the world.
Dahiru said this in Benin, while delivering a lecture, entitled “managing land degradation in Nigeria: the challenges, action and remediation,” at the 10th Environmental Outreach Magazine public lecture and environmental awards.
According to him, 24 billion tons of fertile soil are lost every year globally. Also, 7.3 million of hectares of forest are lost yearly globally.
He identified population pressure, deforestation, bush burning, overgrazing, agricultural depletion of soil nutrients through poor farming, inappropriate irrigation and indiscriminate mining as some the causes of land degradation in Nigeria.
Dahiru said that NEWMAP had succeeded in reclaiming some land lost to degradation.
He said that inconsistency in policies, inadequate budgetary and unhealthy rivalry between environmental agencies adversely affected management of degradation and deforestation in the country.