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Federal Government commences N19b erosion control project...
The Federal government has commenced the implementation of the N19 billion Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project in 7 Southern states of the country.
The fund was contributed by the federal government and development partners including: International Development Association, IDA, the Global Environmental Facility, GEF, Trust Fund and the Special Climate Change Fund, SCCF.
The National Project Coordinator Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project, NEWMAP, Mr. Chikelo Nwune made the disclosure at a press briefing yesterday in Abuja.
According to him, the seven states to benefit from the fund are: Abia, Anambra, Cross River, Ebonyi, Edo, Enugu and Imo state respectively. Mr. Nwune said the project would target erosion erosion control in the affected states.
According to him, NEWMAP project has been specifically designed in response to President Goodluck Jonathan’s request to development partners for support in addressing the age-long and yet worsening problem of land and water degradation.
The project, he added would reduce vulnerability to ravaging gully erosion in targeted watershed hence support the country’s transformation agenda to achieve greater environmental and economic security.
His words: “The operation is an 8 year strategic investment loan of $508.59 million consisting of a $500M IDA concessional loan blended with GEF and SCCF grants totalling $8, 59 million.
“The areas on focus presently falls within the high rain fall belt and in that belt you find out that the vegetation you have tall green because of the duration of rain fall.
“Some of this gully sites are over 90 meters in dept and sometimes in weight it could be as wide as 300 to 500 meters wide and some of them in terms of length it could be up to 5 to 10 kilometres.
“We find out that some of them have devastated in their host communities, the devastation is not only affecting the roads.
“In that ecological environment, the soils are predominantly very week and the natural environment and the topography are included in the sense that it is not you and me that did it but nature allows the topography and tomopology to do that.
“This category A Project will take a multiscale and a multisector approach in implementation in the initial seven south eastern states of the federation.” Nwune stated.