Fast fashion: Love Island’s second-hand wardrobe idea will promote sustainability

Love Island, the popular dating reality show, will return this summer with new eco-friendly practices in mind.

Yes. Contestants this year are ditching fast fashion and will use second-hand clothing for a summer of sustainability!

In the sizzling summer series where men and women go to an island with one goal in mind – to find the love of their life – contestants usually share a wardrobe, and new clothes are sent through partnerships with fashion brands. However, for the eighth season, ITV2 (creators of the series) announced a partnership with eBay to create an eco-friendly wardrobe for the islanders.

This is in a bid to inspire viewers to shop second-hand and for the show to embrace a more eco-friendly production with more focus on ways in which they can visibly show the eco-friendliness on TV.

To encourage sustainable shopping, viewers will be able to shop the islanders’ outfits through the show’s app, which will have links to eBay’s fashion pieces.

Fast fashion and the environment

The fashion industry is pumping out and selling more clothes than ever before. As fashion brands introduce new items online and in-store every week, the chances of you owning something that could be described as “fast fashion” are high. But why does it matter?

The term fast fashion is used as a catchy way to describe the ultra-quick and cheap processes employed by the fashion industry that can have harmful effects on the environment. Trending styles are designed, manufactured, transported, and sold by retail stores just in time for a new trend to come along to repeat the cycle.

Now, here’s the sad part – a great portion of clothes end up in landfills and become a key source of greenhouse gas emissions, all thanks to fast fashion! To fully drive home the point on how damaging this is, let’s take a look at polyester.

Polyester, which is the most commonly used fiber in clothing, is made from plastic and will never fully decompose. Instead, it acts like other forms of plastic, which are rarely recycled and will break down into microplastics for years to come, harming wildlife and emitting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

We can see exactly how damaging the fashion industry is to the environment due to the prevalence of fast fashion. This means change needs to happen soon and it begins with us.

For us to save the planet, we need to ensure that when our t-shirt wears thin or the knees of our pants wear out or our socks get holes, we can still make good use of the material that’s left or offer them up to be recycled instead of just stuffing them in the garbage (and they end up in landfills!)

So, when cleaning out the closet, it’s pertinent to make at least two piles – one for stuff that’s still wearable, free of holes, and without serious stains, and one for done and dusted. The clothes that are in good condition should be donated to charity. Then, they can be sold inexpensively, used by someone else, and provide money to a good cause.

Many people shop second-hand as much to reduce their footprint as to save money, so this allows those willing to do that access to quality clothing. And, others simply can’t afford the styles and quality they’d like, so thrift stores give them access to what they’d like. For those into cutting-edge fashion, changing up the wardrobe annually, donating to thrift stores allows the changeover to be a little more environmentally friendly.

That said, for soiled, torn, and stained clothing that isn’t suitable to be worn by anyone anymore, it’s time to consider whether or not they can be reused at home. There are lots of crafty projects to upcycle old clothes: pillow covers, shopping bags, rugs, and so on.

Little pockets of action also go as far as big steps. Let’s play our part in saving the planet.

Plastic waste: Kaltani raises US$4m in seed funding to expand recycling operations in Nigeria

Our dependency on plastic is causing great damage to the environment. This is because plastic waste is one of many types of waste that do not decompose easily – taking anywhere between 20 to 500 years to degrade in landfills.

To make matters worse, about 91% of all the plastics produced in the world aren’t recycled. What this means is that tons of plastic products that ended up in the dumpsites are still very much around. Yikes!

With so much plastic waste on the planet, human health, the climate, as well as marine life, are at huge risk due to interaction with the synthetic substances in plastics.

To tackle the global plastic epidemic and also solve Africa’s growing plastic waste crisis by promoting the circular economy and recycling best practices, Kaltani, a clean-tech plastic recycling, and waste management company, has raised a US$4 million funding round.

Kaltani will use the seed funding to open 20 new collection and aggregation centers across Nigeria and increase its staff strength to over 500 people. These updates will augment its capacity substantially, allowing the company to recycle up to 15,000 tonnes of plastic waste each year.

“The world has a plastic pollution crisis. Plastic waste is an environmental disaster causing environmental degradation to our oceans, aquatic life, the air we breathe and our health. With the amount of plastic waste produced set to continue skyrocketing, the world desperately needs actionable and scalable solutions. At Kaltani, we have already proven that our solution and model work effectively and efficiently with a thorough A-Z value chain solution, and we are beyond excited to commence our expansion into other parts of Nigeria,” said Engineer Obi Charles Nnanna, Founder, Kaltani.

Kaltani’s technology utilizes data analytics, predictive analytics, and geo-mapping to ensure transparency and traceability throughout the value chain.

The startup has a team of 100 spread across its collection centers, recycling factory, and offices, that employ systematic scalable steps to reduce PET, PE, PP Plastic pollution, and municipal solid waste.

The process is simple – bottles and other plastic waste are collected and transported to collection centers for aggregation and processing, and eventually taken to its recycling factory. At the factory, plastics are then converted into hot-washed PET flakes, and PE and PP pellets which are then sold to FMCG companies for thermoform, sheet, packaging, bottling, and fiber applications.

Lagos heavy rains alert: How to protect yourself from flood

Climate change is so dangerous that natural phenomena are becoming very scary. If you’re a resident of Lagos, Nigeria, you are no doubt aware that the city has been witnessing rising temperatures leading to heatwaves and variation in rainfall patterns.

Lagos State government has alerted residents of the state of incoming heavy rains, amounting to 1,750mm in 2022, with attendant socio-economic implications for residents of the state.

The state government, however, urged residents not to panic, as every arrangement has been put in place to ensure adequate protection of lives and property.

Speaking at a media briefing on the 2022 Seasonal Climate Predictions in Lagos, held in Alausa, Ikeja, the Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tunji Bello, said

“The predicted onset, cessation and rainfall amount of 2022 is similar to the prediction for 2021, and the implication is that we are anticipating experiencing a rain pattern of high intensity and frequency similar to that of 2021. Lagos Island is expected to have a rainfall onset date of April 6, a cessation date of November 30, and a total rainfall amount of 1627mm.”

“However, the Seasonal Climate Prediction for Lagos State generally signifies that the onset dates range between March 17 at the earliest and April 6, 2022, at the latest, while the cessation dates range between November 30 and December 5, 2022, while the Maximum Annual Rainfall amount is predicted to be 1,750mm.”

He said it was expected that the recent increased frequency of extreme weather events would continue in 2022 with days of extremely high rainfall amounts, which might result in flooding.

“We call for caution as strong winds are expected during the onset and cessation of every rainfall just as envisaged harmattan is predicted which may cause a reduction in visibility and bring about flight disruption and loss of revenue due to delays and cancellations in the aviation sector, ” Bello said.

On expected flooding, he said, “we want to assure you that our State will continue to reap the gains of careful and rigorous planning and execution, as our flood control measures are being stepped up to contain any imminent heavy rainfalls.”

Towards ensuring a flood-free and hygienic environment in the state, Bello said the ministry has embarked on all-year-round drainage maintenance for effective and efficient flood control, in addition to an efficient and sustainable solid waste management system.

The commissioner informed that “In the same vein, we are determined to maintain the long-established synergy and partnership with Ogun-Oshun River Basin Authority (OORBDA) which has ensured control and monitoring of the steady and systemic release of water from Oyan Dam to prevent flooding of the downstream reaches of Ogun River. This mutual relationship has been highly beneficial in the past and we intend to sustain it.

“Just last Tuesday, the management of Oyan Dam, OD and Water Resources, WR, had a meeting with the Ogun-Oshun River Basin Authority on ways to sustain our partnership in the sustainable management of flooding challenges and in the light of the study of hydro-geological mapping of Ogun River alignment presently being carried out by the agency.”

“Therefore, the low-lying areas and neighborhoods of Agiliti, Agboyi, Itowolo, and Ajegunle communities in Lagos State are being closely monitored with respect to the likelihood of Ogun River flooding as well as all other river basins in the State. These places may also be highly vulnerable to heavy flooding this year.”

Protecting yourself

What can people living in coastal regions and other low-lying areas do when there’s flooding? This article shares a few universal tips that can help you no matter where you live.

Evacuate on time

The best measure to take against flooding is to evacuate if you live in a potentially high-risk area. Secure your home to prevent damage. If there’s time, remove furniture and other essential household items to a safe place. Before you leave, make sure you switch off utilities at the main fuse if necessary. Remove all electrical appliances connected to electricity.

While evacuation is a safe option, many may not be able to do so because they have no alternative accommodations and limited financial resources. If that’s the case for you, read on to find other practical ways that can help to keep you and yours safe.

Inform others and keep yourself informed

Do not isolate yourself from others. If this happens as a result of your circumstance, make sure you notify people (your loved ones, friends, and neighbors) of your whereabouts. At every point, keep yourself informed either by listening to the radio, surfing the internet, or checking your social media.

Stay on firm ground

Don’t attempt to swim or walk or drive through floodwaters. If you must walk or drive through flooded areas, ensure that you move on firm ground. Moving water can be overpowering, strong enough to sweep you off your feet. Also, you will need to look out for stray electrical wires and downed power lines.

Be conscious of your environment

Take note of areas where floodwaters have receded, there might be slippery slopes that you should avoid. Be cautious while driving or walking through as some places might have weakened and could collapse under the weight of a car. Also, watch out for debris, broken bottles, iron rods, planks, and other dangerous materials.

Trash to Cash: Mamadou Diaw produces drip irrigation systems made of 100% recycled plastics

Plastic waste pollution is one of the major challenges that the world faces today and needs to be solved to protect our living environment and the oceans.

Rapid urbanization and economic development are increasing amounts of solid waste. The worst part is that the plastic that makes up the total waste can take up to about 19%.

Solid waste and more specifically plastic waste is becoming a major headache for waste management officials struggling to implement an affordable and effective waste management system suitable for their city.

Globally, only about 15% of the generated plastic waste is recycled and although a considerable amount of plastic waste is collected by waste pickers and sold to the plastic recycling sector, there is still a lot of plastic waste dumped and burnt in landfills.

This affects public health as the concern about microplastic and the increased risk of particles entering food chains is growing as well as the toxic gases that emanate from dumpsites.

It is for this reason that we will be taking a look at what entrepreneurs with viable business ideas around plastic waste are doing. One of such entrepreneurs is Mamadou Diaw.

Mamadou Diaw is the founder of DMS (Synthetic Material Development), a growing business based in Thiès, Senegal. DMS is Senegal’s first and only producer of drip irrigation systems, made of up to 100% of recycled plastic. The company provides after-sales service and hands-on training in the use of the drip irrigation system.

After several years of experience in an industrial metal production company in Italy, Mamadou Diaw developed skills in the fields of production of pipes and recycling of plastic products. It was that experience that motivated him to start producing PE water pipes and electricity tubes out of recycled plastic waste.

With the experience he acquired in Italy, Mamadou Diaw does not only see what he does as just recycling plastic waste but also sees it as the development of activity with positive environmental impact, especially in rural areas.

Apart from manufacturing products made of recycled plastics, Mamadou Diaw also gives training to students and waste pickers about the collection and sorting of plastic waste.

The journey for him hasn’t always been rosy as he faces major challenges such as 100% recycling of plastic waste as well as financial constraints.

Despite the challenges, Mamadou Diaw remains positive and aims for a growth of about 20% turnover each year to stay afloat.

He believes that research and innovation in plastics and the circular economy are needed for him to find effective solutions for a 360-degree control of the issue.

Localizing sustainable development solutions to curb the effects of climate change in Africa

When it comes to climate change and its impacts, Africa is the continent that is most vulnerable despite contributing the least to the earth’s environmental change.

And for a continent that has underlying governance, geographical, social, infrastructural, and economic challenges, it is the least equipped to cope with these devastating effects.

Already, climate change is exposing the continent to challenges such as land degradation, deforestation, biodiversity loss, and other climate-related vulnerabilities.

This will have far-reaching effects in Africa since agriculture accounts for the primary share of its economic activities and a majority of its people make their livelihood from the land, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

That, coupled with the underlying issues threatening its adaptive capacity, spells a far greater challenge as it will not only weaken the continent’s environmental health in both rural and urban settings but also its economy and social fabric, thereby increasing poverty and limiting development.

For the fact that Africa’s urban areas are growing rapidly, there is every tendency that they will encounter several impacts of climate change as the infrastructures in these urban areas in Africa are ill-equipped to deal with the effects of climate change.

There just isn’t adequate and efficient infrastructure and concrete plan to maintain basic services, create an environment that is resilient against future climate-related issues, and promote biodiversity, food security, health, water access, and migration.

Already, the refugee crisis on the continent due to the displacement of people as climate change intensifies, is causing people to flee to safer zones. Some of these people, who are mostly Africa’s urban poor and live in high-risk zones, are ill-equipped to adapt and less able to move in the event of natural disasters.

The general climate plan course on the continent is not underpinned by sustainability and in most countries, climate change has not been prominently featured in their development programs. Only a few national development projects have a climate change focus from the initial planning stage.

How can the continent combat these climate change-induced threats of climate change and sustainability and not factored into the development and execution stages of their programs?

To combat these threats, localized sustainable development needs to be adopted and this requires some policy intervention. African countries must prioritize local input at the forefront of policy discussion and implementation, and integrate more local perspectives into the policymaking process as it will result in more resilient climate policies.

Africans must be participants in discussions on how to best deal with these challenges and ensure collaborative efforts are driven to tackle climate change while leveraging as well as integrating indigenous knowledge into Africa’s governance, economic, agricultural, and scientific systems.

When that is combined with policies that promote and enforce transition to low carbon energy, reduction in carbon emissions, implementation of sustainable and eco-friendly technologies, and substantial transformation of industrial, urban, and agricultural systems, Africa will surely be on a course to greater development that is hinged on true resilience.

#SolutionMonday: Eco-conscious? Here are 4 ways to tell if a product is ecofriendly

Hello readers. Welcome to #SolutionMonday on CleanbuildVoices!

We bet you hear a lot about the rise of the conscious consumer, you might even be one and you’re definitely on the right path if you’re one.

As people become more conscious of the way their lifestyles could impact the climate in a negative way, their consciousness is translating to actions as they now prefer buying from companies that share their values. However, eco-conscious individuals, more often than not, find it difficult to pick out which product is truly eco-friendly.

Although it may be difficult to tell if a product is truly eco-friendly by taking a look at it, taking some more time to sift through the greenwashing that many companies do to appear green when they are just after their own pockets will help you stay on course.

Well, you’re in luck. Below are 4 simple ways to navigate the greenwashing by most brands when making purchases:

Do your own research

Research the business in question by doing a quick Google search and see what the media is saying about what the company does to help the environment. Be sure to seek out reputable, trustworthy sources while at it.

Check only for specifics

Many companies claim that their product is ecofriendly with ambiguous statements aimed at confusing you. but broad statements like that don’t really mean anything when you get right down to it.

Instead, take a look at the claims the company makes about their product on their packaging, website, or via their adverts.

Avoid greenwashing branding

Many companies deceive buyers into thinking their product is eco-friendly by using packaging with images suggesting that. Still make your own research and pay no hid to their greenwashing tactics.

Check for certified labels

This is a reliable way to tell if a company is eco-friendly as it involves verification by a reputable third-party organization.

You can check the websites of these third parties or the label of the product itself for green certifications.

Sterling Bank’s clean up exercises in Nigeria: Acts worthy of emulation by corporates

Pollution is becoming an increasing concern in the world today as it has a significant negative effect on the planet and living species.

Particularly of concern is the indiscriminate disposal of waste, one of the leading types of pollution that are not only harmful to human health but also to aquatic life. It is estimated that the world generates over two billion metric tonnes of municipal solid waste and reusable items annually.

Organizations are assuming a sense of urgency to rid communities of waste and promote a culture of recycling to protect the planet.

One of such organizations is Sterling Bank Plc which recently carried out environmental cleaning exercises in 23 states simultaneously, across Nigeria – Lagos, Ogun, Anambra, Oyo, Osun, Jigawa, Kwara, Ondo, Ekiti, Imo, Rivers, Kano, Kaduna, Abuja, Delta, Edo, Abia, Bayelsa, Akwa-Ibom, Gombe, Bauchi, Plateau, and Katsina.

This is part of the bank’s commitment to creating a cleaner and safer environment for the citizenry and aquatic life under its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative known as Sterling Bank Environmental Makeover (STEM).

The cleaning up exercises were carried out in markets, roads and beaches to commemorate the World Recycling Day, a day celebrated across the globe every year on March 18th, with this year’s theme being Recycling Fraternity – which is a reference to people who put themselves on the frontline to collect waste and engage in recycling during the multiple lockdowns as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Sterling Bank Plc cleaning exercise had more than 1,000 participants including staff of Sterling Bank and volunteers.

In Lagos, it was executed in partnership with Rite Foods, First Exploration and Petroleum Development Company, Bonnie Bio, the Oniru Kingdom, Sterling One Foundation, African Clean Up Initiative, Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), and Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA).

Speaking at the beach cleaning exercise at Oniru Beach, Lagos, Mr. Abubakar Suleiman, Managing Director and CEO of Sterling Bank, who was ably represented by Mr. Tunde Adeola, Executive Director of Commercial and Institutional Banking at Sterling Bank, said the bank embarked on cleaning exercises in 21 states out of the 24 states it is partnering with across the country.

He remarked, “We have been on this journey for more than 10 years. Every time, this happens, we have a cleaner and healthier environment.”

He further said that Sterling Bank is well positioned to execute these exercises, adding that in the last two years, the bank has received recognition and awards for the initiative. According to him, Sterling Bank is also at the forefront of tourism in Lagos State.

Also speaking, Commissioner for Ministry of Tourism in Lagos State, Mrs. Uzamat Yussuf said, “We are aware that Lagos is a place of aquatic splendour.”

“If we have water that is not well protected and sustained, it is better we don’t have any of it at all and that is why it is important for us to sensitise the citizens of Lagos on the proper way to dispose of wastes properly.”

“When we do not dispose of wastes properly, it becomes an issue for ourselves and the state at large because when the rain starts and all our drainages are blocked, then we continue to experience flooding. In developed countries, they sell their beaches to tourists and make huge money as well as increase level of employment for their people.”

She stressed the need for the citizenry to clean the beaches in a bid to encourage tourists to come and see what the state can offer, adding that the purpose of tourism is to create wealth; which ultimately will increase the GDP of the country. The commissioner also appealed to all to continue to manage and dispose of wastes properly to protect the environment.

Speaking on the bank’s mission, Mrs. Mojisola Bakare, General Manager, Corporate and Investment Banking with Sterling Bank said, “Sterling Bank is about impactful banking”. She further added that for that reason, there is no way they will live on this earth without impacting the environment as demonstrated with the exercise and Sterling’s HEART initiative which stands for Health, Education, Agriculture, Renewable Energy and Transportation.

She also said the head office in Marina, Lagos, is being fitted with solar panels and will soon be sustainably powered by the sun.

Mrs. Bakare stressed the need for us to take responsibility for our actions on the environment and preserve its beauty to boost the local economy and attract foreign tourists, and by extension, foreign exchange into the country.

In Abia state, the Commissioner of Transport, Mr. Godswill Uwanoruo, commended the management and staff of Sterling Bank for the cleaning exercise which started in the state in 2015.

He said, “I started this programme with them in 2015 when I introduced the bank’s team led by the incumbent CEO, Mr. Suleiman, who was the then Executive Director of Finance to the governor of the state, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu.”

“I am happy that they continued the programme by making sure that Abia State is clean,” Uwanoruo said.

He advised other banks in the country to emulate the good gesture of Sterling Bank because it is not an easy thing for members of staff of a company to leave their offices and go out to clean markets and roads. The commissioner also advocated that the exercise be done monthly or quarterly instead of annually.

Similarly, the Commissioner of Environment in Bayelsa State, Mr. Iselema Gbaranbiri, who graced the STEM event in the state noted that “The state government is here with Sterling Bank to show the world that they are synergising and keeping Bayelsa clean.”

Also, Honourable Muktar Baloni, Chairman of the Kaduna North Local Government Area Council, said he was impressed by the level of consistency in Sterling Bank’s environmental cleaning exercise and would want to emulate the bank by directing officials in the local government to replicate what the bank is doing in the local government.

Corporates have a key role to play to reduce waste pollution as many of their activities cause pollution. This means they play a double role as contributors and solution-providers which makes them important in the mitigation of waste pollution.

Sterling Bank is setting an example that is worth emulating and we hope the private sector in collaboration with the public sector can strategize to reduce waste pollution.

#InternationalDayofForests: Exploring 9 biggest forests in Africa

In Africa, forests and woodlands occupy about 21.8% of the continent’s land area and account for about 16.8% of the global forest cover.

Forests have never been more important to human existence than they are in this age of climate change and pollution, and this is because they are one of the most important solutions to addressing the effects of climate change.

They act to balance the climate, especially during this global fight against climate change. For one, they help to regulate ecosystems and protect biodiversity among other benefits. Secondly, they are a solution for greenhouse gas emissions, acting as carbon sinks.

Approximately 2.6 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide which are about one-third of the CO2 released from burning fossil fuels, is absorbed by forests every year.

No doubt, forests and other natural ecosystems are the best and most cost-effective carbon-capture solution, and as countries seek to meet emissions targets, protecting this resource that nature has so generously bestowed on mankind will help us avoid more than one-third of global emissions.

We can only achieve this when we end forest conversion, preserve the forest carbon sink, and restore forests.

To celebrate #InternationalDayofForests, we will be taking you through 9 of Africa’s biggest forests and what they offer nature.

Congo Forest

Covering about 695,000 square miles, the Congo Basin is Africa’s largest contiguous forest and the second-largest tropical rainforest in the world, after the Amazon rainforest.

This swamp-struck tropical forest supports some 10,000 kinds of plants and a huge variety of animals such as African forest elephants, forest buffalo, chimpanzees, bonobos, and a number of subspecies of gorillas.

The Congo Basin rainforest covers portions of Gabon, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Equatorial Guinea.

Budongo Forest Reserve

At 825 square km, the Budongo Forest Reserve which is located in the districts of Hoima, Masindi, and Buliisa in Western Uganda, is the Biggest Mahogany forest found in the whole of East Africa.

This medium-altitude damp semi-deciduous verdant forest is home to rhinos, lions, leopards, buffaloes, hippopotami, cheetah, elephants, giraffes, zebras, chimpanzees, and birds.

Mau Forest

With an area of 273,300 hectares (675,000 acres), Mau forest is one of the biggest forests in East Africa.

It is the largest water catchment area in Kenya and numerous rivers originate from the forest, including Southern Ewaso Ng’iro, Sondu River, Mara River, and Njoro River. These rivers feed Lake Victoria, Lake Nakuru, and Lake Natron Westerns slopes of the Mau.

Cross-Niger Transition Forests

Covering an area of 20,700 sq km, the Cross-Niger transition forests are a tropical moist broadleaf forest ecoregion of southeastern Nigeria.

It is located between the Niger River on the west and the Cross River on the east – the Niger River separates the Cross-Niger transition forests from the Nigerian lowland forests to the west.

The forest is home to a number of wildlife including drill monkeys, African buffalo, cheetahs, warthogs, hippos, caracals, leopards, lions, baboons, elephants, and more than 900 species of birds.

Arabuko Sokoke Forest

With a size of 420 km2, Arabuko-Sokoke Forest is the largest remaining section of dry coastal forest found in Eastern and Southern Africa.

It stretches to the headwaters of the mighty Sabaki River, and occasionally herds of elephants pass through the forest en route to the river. The forest is also home to monkeys and many smaller mammals.

Over 260 species of birds have been recorded in the forest including the six globally threatened ones: sokoke scops owl, sokoke pipit, east coast akalat, spotted ground thrush, amani sunbird, and clarke’s weaver.

Newlands Forest

Covering an area of 400 hectares, Newlands Forest is a conservancy area on the eastern slopes of Table Mountain, beside the suburb of Newlands, Cape Town.

Wildlife in the forest includes chaffinch, cape white-eye, grassbird, southern double-collared sunbird, African black swift, alpine swift, white-rumped swift, black saw-wing swallow, greater striped swallow, African olive pigeon, cape canary, monkeys, African wild dog, and ground hornbill.

Ongoye Forest

Covering an area of 4000 hectares, Ongoye Forest is situated on a granite ridge, inland from the town of Mtunzini in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.

The vegetation in Ongoye Forest includes natal olinia, natal palm-nut, giant umzimbeet, forest mangosteen, forest water berry, Giant Pock Ironwood, Zulu bead-string, Natal Krantz Ash, Natal White Stinkwood, and the Pondo Fig.

Some of the wildlife found there include woodward’s barbet, crowned eagle, yellow streaked bulbul, spotted thrush, red bush squirrel, dwarf chameleons, butterfly, ongoye centipede, and bronze-naped pigeon.

Karura Forest

At 1,041 hectares, Karura Forest Reserve is one of the largest urban gazetted forests in the world.

The forest sits on million-year-old Late Tertiary volcanic rocks and contains nearly all the 605 species of wildlife found in Nairobi including three types of antelope.

Five perennial tributaries of the Nairobi River pass through the forest running roughly west to east and cutting through the gently undulating landscape.

Mount Cameroon and Bioko Montane Forests

Covering an area of 400 square miles, Mount Cameroon and Bioko Montane forests are located in a volcanic chain that extends northeast along the border between Cameroon and Nigeria, and southwest towards the Guinea islands of São Tomé, Príncipe, and Annobo.

#ClimateJusticeThursday: Access to climate change education is essential for climate justice

Hello readers,

Welcome to #ClimateJusticeThursday on CleanbuildVoices!

The world is undeniably facing a climate emergency and we must harness the power of education in the fight against climate change.

This is because climate change education is essential to helping people of all ages understand climate change and take informed action in communities around the world.

It has the potential to arm individuals, governments, and organizations with the essential knowledge and skills that they need to cope with climate change and take action in their own communities. This is especially important in frontline communities that are disproportionately hit by the deadly consequences of climate change.

Increased interest in climate change education and the growing recognition of the challenges inherent to addressing this issue creates an opportunity to put in place, well-rounded educational systems that are efficient for combating the current crisis.

But what should a well-informed climate change education look like?

Climate change is best taught with effective, well-tested education methods of experiential activities around relevant and meaningful impacts of climate change.

Firstly, a well-informed climate change education must be based on gender-responsive curricula to ensure equity and effectiveness.

Secondly, a well-informed climate education must be based on science and must be taught across all levels of education and across all subjects, recognizing and explaining the varied social impacts of the climate crisis, including its disproportionate impact on the most vulnerable groups, women and girls among them.

Thirdly, a well-informed climate change education must also foster critical thinking and civic engagement which will empower students to consider just and sustainable alternatives and take informed actions in their communities. This will help them help build problem-solving skills by engaging them in classroom and community projects to increase awareness.

We all know that students learn more if they are prompted to assess their own ideas, talk through the evidence, and explain their thinking. So, when these strategies are used for climate change education, it can help educators improve their practice and deepen their participants’ learning.

To ensure a just transition to a green economy, our education systems must also be updated so that students are equipped with the skills they need for future careers in a sustainable world. It is therefore important that all students have access to quality climate education.

#Women4theClimate: Triple Threat! Hamira Kobusingye is tackling climate justice, gender justice and pollution

Hello readers. Welcome to #Women4theClimate on CleanbuildVoices!

It’s another Wednesday and we’re excited for you to meet our Woman Crush of the day. She is none other than Hamira Kobusingye, a climate justice activist from Uganda.

With a passion and desire to see a world with climate justice and gender justice, Hamira is an ardent believer that the world cannot achieve climate justice without gender justice.

She also holds a strong belief that climate change affects women differently and as such, gender-focused actions and solutions to climate change should be at the core of climate approaches and strategies.

To Hamira, the impacts of climate change are far-reaching, impacting reproductive health. Little wonder she leverages every platform to drive her point.

After realizing that climate change affects women differently, Hamira devoted her time to making a tangible contribution towards a better tomorrow for women and girls on the frontline.

She raises awareness about climate change, climate action and stirs up conversations on social media to reach as many people as possible.

Hamira is a part of the Friday for Future MAPA (Most Affected People and Areas) which is a coalition of youth climate activists from the most affected areas (Global South). She is also part of the Rise up movement, which aims to amplify the voices of activists from Africa. Her work includes raising awareness of the danger of climate change, the causes, and the impacts.

Her recent activity has been tackling the fossil fuel soot pollution in Port Harcourt (a state where the life expectancy is reported to be just a little above 40 years as a result of the cumulative effect of pollution on health).

Port Harcourt is the capital of Rivers State in Nigeria and the soot crisis has been a major concern in the region because of the health implications it has on inhabitants and the ecosystem at large.

Watch this space as we’ll be back for another edition of our #Women4theClimate.

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