Afforestation – Protecting Our Forest and Future. The need to preserve our forest to improve the quality of trees has become more important than ever. In Nigeria, afforestation is of critical importance, as the whole country has been ravaged by many environmental problems.
Many of our thick forest with valuable trees have been destroyed. People engaging in timber business and bush burning have left our forest empty. With time, there may be empty land with virtually no useful trees.
The trees which are meant to protect us from direct sun rays of ultraviolet radiation are been destroyed on daily basis. And our health is been affected.
Forests are an important component of the environment which plays a significant role in water and soil conservation.
Oxygen, as we all know, is the most important need of our life. We inhale oxygen when we breathe and exhale carbon dioxide. Trees take it and convert it into oxygen again. So the cycle continues.
We get food, fruits, timber and medicines from forests. Paper industry and rubber industry depend on forests. They give shelter to wild animals like lions, tigers, bears, etc.
Without a doubt, forest in Nigeria is being depleted at an alarming rate. Apart from serving as a source of timber, forests are destroyed daily for farming activities. Added to the above, is the destruction of this natural environment for the sitting of industries, residential buildings, and road construction.
When the forests are destroyed, the soil is left bare and as a result exposed to erosion and in some cases, flooding. Therefore, many plant species are lost and the natural home of wildlife destroyed.
Afforestation is, therefore, beneficial to the environment as it addresses environmental degradation, particularly desertification, deforestation, erosion, and flooding as well as reducing the effects of climate change.
Afforestation also forms a background for important developments to take place particularly in land use practices, environment, and natural resources management.
However, the conservation of our forests should not be limited to the government alone. Individuals, private and public firms should adopt the culture of preserving nature’s gift to us bearing in mind that not all countries have such natural resources.
We should all work together to protect and preserve our forests for future generations.