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Exemplary vision for the earth

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By Awodare Awofisayo

Hitherto, April 22 every year meant nothing especial to me apart from being the birthday of three members of my extended family. Last Saturday, April 22, 2017 took on a more significant importance with an event I chanced on. Around 10.30am on that day, I was driving from Falomo towards Lekki via the iconic link bridge when I saw a group of people decked in green and white T-shirts with ‘earth day’ and ‘visionscape’ boldly emblazoned on them congregating right inside the Alexander roundabout in Ikoyi. They were assisting about twenty young children to carry a certain task which was not visible to me from afar. This rekindled my curiousity. So I parked to make an enquiry. As I approached the tent, I heard a mother driving past shouting “we have kids too, can we come ?”. A lady retorted “why not!” and the woman in question parked and joined the group.

On joining the group, I was informed that it was the the celebration of the World Earth Day by Vision scape, an international leading environmental utility group providing turnkey solutions in areas of sanitation, energy and waste water treatment. I was shocked to learn that every 22nd April is observed as as the World Earth Day since 1970! Waoh! A whopping 47 years and the day does not have the clout of other popular days in Nigeria in spite of the overwhelming significance of the earth. I also learnt that an American Senator from Wisconsin, Gayford Nelson first conceived of the World Earth Day when he was worried about the rate of industrialization and the careless attitude of people towards the environment.

Like Visionscape, the Earth Day Network is in the Nigeria News of the celebration in over 193 countries. I commend Visionscape for marking the Day with children who are the leaders of tomorrow. This is indeed a visionary move that would sensitize the next generation to the need to protect the environment. The auguries are alarming to say the least, our planet earth is reported to be losing over 15 billion trees every year which translates to losing about 5.6 acres of forest every minute! Neglect of the environment is causing severe problems like the depletion of the ozone layer, death of rivers due to dumping of industrial waste and global warming.

Visionscape demonstrated this by teaching the young ones how to plant trees to green the environment in line with the reforestation campaign geared to benefit communities, increase habitat for species and combat climate change . The company stressed the importance of caring and loving the earth passionately.

At the ceremony, Visionscape asked people to join in the effort to safeguard the earth by planting trees, limiting use of vehicles in order to reduce pollution and conserving petrol and switching off lights when not in use in addition to reducing carbon footprints by recycling papers and putting a stop to the use of plastic bags.

The theme of this year’s celebration ‘Environmental and Climate Literacy’ was well articulated by the Visionscape team and one can only hope that the company would sustain the scope of its advocacy for a better environment.

  • Awofisayo is based in Lagos

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