Climate Story Highlight: Gideon

My name is Gideon Oluwaseun, born and bred in the South Western region of Nigeria. Having graduated with a Degree in Biochemistry, many people wondered why I turned out as a Climate Action Advocate, but I kept reflecting on the different detrimental effects of changes in climatic conditions that i noticed which sprang me into actions.

These adverse climatic conditions has produced negative impacts on the welfare of millions of people in my country. Persistent droughts and flooding, off season rains and dry spells have sent growing seasons out of orbit, on a country dependent on a rain fed agriculture. I grew up in a locality where we wash ourselves periodically under rainfall but overtime, Alarm bells sounded the drought trend, drying up of lakes and reduction in river flow in the arid and semi arid region resulting in fewer water supplies for use in agriculture, hydro-power generation and other users which affected the yield and productivity of agricultural produce.

On the other hand, Nigeria's predominant source of energy is non-renewable and this represents one of the major concern about Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation. Evidence is shown in overdependence on petrol in fuelling cars and generators, Liquefied Natural Gas in cooking and powering plants even though, adoption of solar power generation for powering street lights and boreholes has started gaining momentum to a greater advantage.

The implementation of Policies to curb climate change by reducing the consumption of fossil fuels such as oil, gas or carbon has experienced counteractions due to its significant economical impacts on the producers(the government) or rather the suppliers of these fuels. Nigeria is the eighth largest oil supplier in the world and the ninth largest deposits of gas,our economy is sensitive to this as it would be massively affected by a sustainable reduction in fossil energy consumption. Nevertheless, its time for a legally binding agreement on Climate Change and the revolution should and would include Nigeria.

My Passion for Climate Action can be built around the fact that an average Nigerian do not indepthly understand Climate Change despite its existing impacts on our day-to-day activities and how we have being contributing via different processes such as deforestation, environmental pollution and wasteful utilization of renewable resources. Raising awareness on the issues surrounding climate change can make a significant difference particularly household and communal measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions which is essential to slowing the rate of climate change. With this, i saw the dire need to inform and sensitize Nigerians, particularly youth and women who are most vulnerable.

We are all responsive and responsible for the changes in climatic conditions. Active collaborations and actions at the grassroots will definitely be a key in fighting this menace. It is our various individual actions that will safe our planet and make the environment more sustainable. Personally, i have been taking steps to advocate for Actions against Climate Change through Sensitization Workshops and strategic online campaigns via my social media networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I join the Care About Climate Movement in The United States as a Volunteer to help actualize their organizational aspirations through Educational Presentations on Climate Change in Nigeria. I have the Understanding that if humans will survive on Planet Earth, Sustainability must be achieved and it starts with our Victory over Climate Change.

I want to further be part of the global network working hard to ensure that victory and this remains one of the reasons why I will be attending the International Youth Conference on Climate Change in France to play an active role in the global dialogue that seek to find workable solutions to halt Climate Change.

My zeal for Environmental causes such as Waste Management, Renewable/Clean Energy and Recycling has influenced my future career and as such, i will be pursuing a Masters Degree in Environmental Sustainability (Climate Change and International Development) at the University of East Anglia, UK in the next two years.