The Great Green Wall Programme Implementation Unit GGW/PIU of the Federal Ministry of Environment has been upgraded to an agency.
The new agency to be known as the National Agency on Great Green Wall (NAGGW) was recently approved by the President to urgently and holistically address the challenges of desertification in the northern part of Nigeria.
The Great Green Wall is a planned project charged with planting a wall of trees across Africa at the southern edge of the Sahara desert as a means to prevent desertification. It was developed by the African Union (AU) to address the detrimental social, economic and environmental impacts of land degradation and desertification in the Sahel and the Sahara.
From the initial idea of a line of trees from east to west through the African desert, the vision of a Great Green Wall has evolved into that of a mosaic of interventions addressing the challenges facing the people in the Sahel and the Sahara.
As a programming tool for rural development, the overall goal of this sub-regional partnership is to strengthen the resilience of the region’s people and natural systems with sound ecosystem management, the protection of rural heritage and the improvement of the living conditions of the local population.
Contributing to improved local incomes, the Great Green Wall of the Sahara and the Sahel Initiative (GGWSSI) will be a global answer to the combined effect of natural resources degradation and drought in rural areas.
The initiative is a partnership that supports the effort of local communities in the sustainable management and use of forests, rangelands and other natural resources in dry lands. It also seeks to contribute to climate change mitigation and adaptation, as well as improve food security in the Sahel and the Sahara.
The programme brings together more than 20 countries from the Sahelo-Saharan region including Algeria, Burkina Faso, Benin, Chad, Cape Verde, Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, the Gambia and Tunisia.
By Alex Abutu