Through a lecture on flood control, the Lagos State University seeks a permanent solution to perennial flooding in Lagos
In recent years, excessive rainfalls have caused devastating flooding in some parts of Lagos, Ibadan, Ogun and Jos, destroying properties and resulting in loss of lives. The incidents are perennial and past efforts at combating them yielded few ameliorating results. The Lagos State University, LASU, Ojo on July 20 made its contributions to the search for sustainable solutions to the challenges of flooding. In a lecture titled Thinking Beyond Rio+ 20: The Politics of Environmental Change and Sustainability in an Urbanising World, the university’s Faculty of Social Sciences had David Simon, a professor of Development Geography of the University of London, as the guest speaker.
Simon stressed the importance of a strong bond between the government and the citizens in preserving the environment through proper planning. He asserted that only such a partnership between the government and the people could save the environment from further problems.
He advised that conscious efforts was necessary to protect the environment from the danger a rise in sea water level could pose. “We need sustained environmental responsibilities while we upscale our environmental activities even at individual levels,” he said. African countries, which share same coastal lines, he proposed, should take proactive measures at preventing the environment “because the way we think has to change if we are to cope with climate change.”
Simon, a consultant to the United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-HABITAT, noted that with a metre’s rise in sea water level, which was below the prediction of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, IPCC, Badagry, Victoria Island and Ajegunle, in Lagos, would be highly devastated. He said lack of recycling facilities for plastic used for bottling beverages, and polythene, had negative consequences for the environment. The litter blocks drainage channels. Professor Princewill Alozie of LASU’s Philosophy Department said little had been achieved through several environmental policies because “our governments are neo-colonial.” He said the multinational companies connived with most governments to make planning more challenging in the country.