An Environmental activist, Mr Rasheed Lawal, has harped on the benefits of tree planting to address climate change.
Lawal made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Lagos.
He said that it was important to actively pursue tree planting because of its inherent commercial benefits.
“With tree planting, we will achieve a better world through mitigating the rapidly changing climate; these trees will be a ‘sink’ and a form of balancing greenhouse gas emissions.
“There will also be provision of jobs and source of livelihood to planters and maintainers of these trees.
“We can make tree planting a front burner issue by promoting the commercial and profit making side of tree planting. This is one way of getting private individuals to establish plantation of commercial trees.
“There are wide ranges of trees whose by-products could be exploited for commercial gains,” he said.
Lawal also called for government’s intervention in provision of incentives for tree farmers as they were doing to food crop farmers.
“Forestry departments of the ministries of agriculture across states have neglected the campaign for tree planting and the impending benefits. This should be revived.
“Just as arable crops farmers are getting incentives from the government, tree farmers should also benefit from such grants.
“The usual or correct answer to address deforestation issues will be government regulations and control. But with experience, that alone will not stop these acts, especially the illegal wood miners,”Lawal said.
The expert said there was need to reduce the toxic and climate wrenching greenhouse gases directly linked to most companies and industries.
“Hence, it is now up to us to engage in ventures that will curb the excesses of company’s emissions into the environment. It is a form of balancing the scale.
“Trees being planted will definitely suffice for the deficit,” he said.