THE GREENWEEK: RESPECT OUR LAND, GROW OUR FUTURE.
Africa is traditionally known for its beautiful climate. However in the last decade, the continent has been drying up. This means that the food insecurity situation that we are currently experiencing now will not get any better. Approximately 2/3 of Africa’s economy depends on agriculture and the death of agriculture will imply serious implications on the continents economy.
It is for such reasons that Green Cameroon, a nongovernmental organization based in Buea South West region of Cameroon whose point of interest is environmental protection and conservation organized a one week conference the Green Week, to address common daily practices that affect our community either directly or indirectly. The one week conference addressed issues related to Waste, Forest, Water and Agriculture. Each topic had a unique captivating slogan, for agriculture it was Respect your land, Grow your future.
Green Cameroon was formed with a strong commitment to fighting environmental problems in our communities like deforestation, desertification, unsustainable farming practices, improper waste disposal methods, water scarcity, health problems linked to sanitation and the general look warmness towards environmental and sustainable development issues.
Friday was set aside to discuss good agricultural practices. Mr Elame Germaine of the Sub Delegation of Agriculture and Rural Development gave a detailed presentation on organic farming. He explained the advantages of organic farming as it brings about balance in biodiversity and decreases deforestation and prevents global warming. He advised farmers to practice clean agriculture otherwise known as second generation agriculture with no chemical poisoning as this could directly affect farmers health in the course of spraying which will lead to a decrease in scale of production and subsequent decrease in income.
Also present at the Green Week conference was AGRO-HUB. Mr Valery Colong, cofounder and Managing Director of AGRO-HUB gave a presentation on AGRO-HUB’s achievements and the challenges faced so far in the agricultural market with the opening of its 1st farmers supermarket, AGRO-MART on the 28th of March 2013. He pointed out there was a need for an organized agricultural market where there is transparency and a well structured food distribution channel if we wanted to make food accessible to all and help farmers make more money from their laborious efforts in the field which is exactly what AGRO-MART is doing. He also urged other agricultural stakeholders to follow in same light.
Mathew Piscopo of Trees For the Future also gave an interesting presentation on Agroforestry, and best agricultural practices.
The Green Week continued with a Green walk on Saturday in the Bokaoungo primary forest to show how our exaggerated lumbering activities are affecting both plant and animal species in our primary forest and shifting them towards extinction. The Green Week conference ended on Sunday with a round table conference.
Although the countries of Africa have some of the lowest overall and per capita global warming emissions on the planet, they are also likely to suffer from some of the worst consequences of climate change which are already unfolding in the form of droughts, famine, desertification, and population displacement. It all boil down to how much we respect our land and understand that the very practices we carry on the land today will have consequences in the future. There is the need for us to understand that the little practices and things we do and take for granted turn out to affect our very own well being on the planet. We need to make our communities friendly and habitable not only to us but for the next generations to come. Thumbs up to Green Cameroon for making such knowledge available to all through this conference.
Agriculture still remains the grid of most African countries and addressing issues that affect climate change which in turn affects agricultural productivity will be saving the lives of many.
Earth Day comes up on the 22nd of April, what are you doing to protect mother Earth?