July 16, 2024
Protection of Africa’s Natural Carbons Sinks will enhance sustainability – Sahara Group
Protection of Africa’s Natural Carbons Sinks will enhance sustainability
– By Alison Godswill

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Protection of Africa’s Natural Carbons Sinks will enhance sustainability – Sahara Group

Protecting and rehabilitating Africa’s natural carbon sinks, such as forests, oceans, coastal mangroves, wetlands and grasslands can significantly aid in mitigating the effects of climate change, Ejiro Gray, Director, Governance and Sustainability, Sahara Group has said.

Speaking at the maiden edition of Asharami Square, Sahara Group’s initiative aimed at promoting sustainability through media advocacy, Gray this developing intentional policies and investments on protecting the continent’s carbon sinks would enhance carbon sequestration and reduce net emissions.

She said these natural landscapes act as significant carbon reservoirs, absorbing and storing carbon dioxide (CO₂) from the atmosphere, adding that developing reforestation and afforestation programs, implementing strict conservation policies, and providing financial incentives for conservation projects are critical for combating climate change in Africa.

According to Gray, Natural Gas Development and Commercialization, Increase Use of Renewables, investment in low-cost / low emissions clean energy solutions, Carbon Capture Storage / Carbon Capture and Reutilization are other factors that can help accelerate Africa’s march towards sustainability.

“Natural gas presents a viable opportunity to serve as a transition fuel as Africa continues to gradually invest in renewable energy. It is a relatively clean-burning fossil fuel, producing fewer CO₂ emissions compared to coal or petroleum. In 2021, Africa’s natural gas reserves totalled over 620 trillion cubic feet. By developing and monetizing these reserves through processing and eventual usage of CNG, LNG, LPG and other gas products, Africa can leverage its natural gas resources to support sustainable energy development,” Gray said.

Speaking on the role of the media in promoting sustainability, Bethel Obioma, Head, Corporate Communications at Sahara Group said Africa needs to articulate and promote a robust sustainability narrative that leaves no one behind in issues relating to climate change, energy access and energy transition, among others.

“To achieve this, Sahara Group hopes to make Asharami Square a formidable platform through advocacy and collaboration towards shoring up capacity and participation of all segments of the media to drive accuracy, clarity, impact, positive policy formulation, agenda-setting and collective action,” he said.

Obioma said Asharami Square would feature mentoring, training, exchange programs, facility tours for media practitioners and competitions to recognise and celebrate exceptional reporting of sustainability in the media. BusinessDay, a foremost provider of business and financial intelligence and insight in West Africa emerged as winner of the Asharami Square’s Sustainable Media Reporting Excellence award.

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