By Thank God Amos
The need to educate children at an early age on the importance of the environment, climate change and its effects will no doubt make them aware of their surroundings and develop an early instinct to protect it, Alexandrial Allen has said.
Discussing on the Impact of Climate Change on Children during the AMDF weekly Climate Tweet chat on Thursday, 7th February; Allen the Founder of Foundation Starters Lagos Nigeria, called for an inclusion of climate change Education in Nigeria’s school curriculum stressing it will better aid in combating more disastrous effects of climate change.
According to her, “children are susceptible to learning and being influenced so why not positively teach them to love their environment. We can be assured that they will continue with the legacy thereby passing unto the generations after them, from my experience with children they imitate the adults around them if we are imbibing in them the culture of a green environment”.
She defined climate change as the rise in average surface temperatures on Earth mostly caused by anthropogenic activities of man which courses flooding, drought, landslides, hurricane, ozone layer depletion etc],poverty, malnutrition, diseases, and even death. Hence, she called for a concerted effort to protect “our home planet earth as we have no other place conducive to live.
“Let us leave the earth greener than ever as against our present acts, if we continue to fold our arms doing nothing the possibility of passing the ‘Tipping Point’ is high. And it can result to catastrophic consequences including a threat to human existence; imagine a world without people, without animals, without life that’s what the future might hold if we don’t act now”.
Allen lamented that “there is probable chance that climate change could end in disaster if we don’t do something about it now. We are already experiencing excessive droughts, wildfires, floods, weather changes and harsh weather conditions”.
She however, proffered measures that can be taken to protect children and the future generation from the effects of climate change. These include: “Early sensitization as teaching children at early age the importance of the environment, climate change and its effects goes a long way to create awareness for them to understand the environment; waste management for a healthy and safe environment, access to clean water which prevents dehydration and water borne diseases.
“Flood and severe storms can be addressed with proper town planning and flood prevention measures to keep children safe and keep them from being homeless and out of place. Discouraging deforestation and encouraging reforestation to address heat stress as a result of extreme heat from climate change and children can also be protected.
Also, “educating the masses old and young on the importance of the environment, and implementing policies that protect the environment”.