Silently Sahara Encroaches

“We sell fire wood”

Very few Nigerians are aware that Sahara desert encroaches every year, which means in the next few years a good portion of northern Nigeria will be enveloped by sand dunes. It is well known fact that Northern Nigerian depends largely on agriculture for its sustenance. If Sahara is allowed to devastate this fertile land, the sustainability of this region is at stake.
Deforestation and bush burning are major contributing factors to desert encroachment. Kano state, where this report is being complied, is no exception to this phenomenon. And as such there is a need for the state to take urgent action in preservation of these trees as serve as natural barriers to such disasters.
From time immemorial, fire wood has been in use for cooking by both rural and urban women. In my research I spoke to one Alhaji Aliyu Hadejia, a firewood dealer who has been in the business for so many years. He says he get his fire wood from Jos in plateau state. It is in this area, where their suppliers cut down trees and burn bushes to sell off woods and charcoals to various dealers all over the country. They claim that the trees being cut down are no longer of use in those areas

Stock of Fire Wood for sale

He says “it is the source of my living where I carter for many people, I have many workers too who get their source of income from my firewood business”.
It amazes me while the whole world is campaigning against deforestation and dealing with climatic issues, here in my part of world people are inviting climatic disasters to our society.
I further went on to ask women why they use firewood for the cooking. One Amina is a house wife and she says “my husband cannot always afford kerosene nor can he afford cooking gas. Our only option is to use firewood for it is cheaper”.
Trees consume carbon dioxides released into the air and produce oxygen back for human respiration. They provide soil fertility, vegetation cover as well as shelter to animal and insect life .But there are simply not enough trees in this part of the country. Researchers at the Bayero University Kano with their colleagues from the foreign universities are trying a brand new source of Bio-gas energy. To discourage tree felling.

The success of this experiment in this part of the country might go a long way. In the prevention of some environmental degradation. Though more efforts are crucial to effectively manage and protect the general condition of the environment. Hence the campaign for tree planting should be encouraged.

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