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Natural Resources In Nigeria Environmental Sciences Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Environmental Sciences
Wordcount: 4648 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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The oil rich Nigerian economy, long limping by political unstability, corruption, and poor macroeconomic performance management, is undergo sufficiently substantial economic reform under the new civilian administration. Nigeria’s former military rulers failed to diversifying the economy away from overdependence on the capital intensive oil sector, which provides 20% of GDP, 95% of foreign exchange earnings, and about 65% of budgetary revenues in the country.

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The large subsistence agricultural sector have failed to keeping up with rapid population growth, and Nigeria, once a large net exporter of food, now must import food to support their satisfy needs. Following the signing of an IMF stand by agreement in August 2000, Nigeria received a debt restructuring deal from the Paris Club and a $1 billion loan from the IMF, both contingent on economic reforms. Increases in foreign investment and oil production combined with high world oil prices should push growth over 4% in 2001 and 2002.

GDP: purchasing power parity – $117 billion (2000 est.)

GDP – real growth rate: 3.5% (2000 est.)

GDP – per capita: purchasing power parity – $950 (2000 est.)

GDP – composition by sector:

agriculture: 40%

industry: 40%

services: 20% (1999 est.)

Population below poverty line: 45% (2000 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:

lowest 10%: 1.6%

highest 10%: 40.8% (1996 and 1997)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 6.5% (2000 est.)

Labor force: 66 million (1999 est.)

Labor force – by occupation: agriculture 70%, industry 10%, services 20% (1999 est.)

Unemployment rate: 28% (1992 est.)


revenues: $3.4 billion

expenditures: $3.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000 est.)

Industries that implemented in Nigeria: crude oil, coal, tin, columbite, palm oil, peanuts, cotton, rubber, wood, hides and skins, textiles, cement and other construction materials, food products, footwear, chemicals, fertilizer, printing, ceramics, steel

Industrial production growth rate: 1.5% (2000 est.)

Electricity for production: 18.7 billion kWh (1999)

Electricity for the production by source:

fossil fuel: 52.94%

hydro: 47.06%

nuclear: 0%

other: 0% (1999)

Consumption of Electricity : 17.372 billion kWh (1999)

Export of Electricity: 19 million kWh (1999)

Electricity – imports: 0 kWh (1999)

Products of Agriculture: cocoa, peanuts, palm oil, corn, rice, sorghum, millet, cassava (tapioca), yams, rubber; cattle, sheep, goats, pigs; timber; fish

Exports: $22.2 billion (f.o.b., 2000 est.)

Exports – commodities: petroleum and petroleum products 95%, cocoa, rubber

Exports – partners: US 36%, India 9%, Spain 8%, Brazil 6%, France 6%, (1999)

Imports: $10.7 billion (f.o.b., 2000 est.)

Imports – commodities: machinery, chemicals, transport equipment, manufactured goods, food and live animals

Imports – partners: UK 11%, Germany 10%, US 9%, France 8%, China 6% (1999)

Debt – external: $32 billion (2000 est.)

Economic aid – recipient: ODA $250 million (1998)

Currency: naira (NGN)

Currency code: NGN

Exchange rates: nairas per US dollar – 110.005 (January 2001), 101.697 (2000), 92.338 (1999), 21.886 (1998), 21.886 (1997), 21.884 (1996)


Currently, several activities are become implemented by the Ministry of Water Resources and Rural Development In Nigeria with in under planning of water supply, sustainable food production, and rural development. These include several plans :

Formulation of the Irrigation Policy for Nigeria, it’s Formal irrigation started in Nigeria 21 years ago. However, a National policy on irrigation have not been produced again. This situation was become corrected by the preparation of an irrigation policy for the Nigeria country

Surface and Groundwater Monitoring Under the National Fatima Development Programme: The main objective is to monitor and analyses the effect of groundwater exploitation for irrigation on flood plains in the semi-arid areas of the country in order to design effective and sustainable exploitation regimes for the various aquifers encountered. Work started in five pilot States in 1995 and is scheduled to be completed by September, 1997.This planning will also seek to ascertain the pollution potentials of the saturated groundwater zone due to the irrigation activities in the project area. The study, which will ultimately assist in the design of the groundwater exploitation plan for the project area is expected to be completed by the end of 1998.

Survey and Inventory of Irrigation Projects in Nigeria: The aim is to obtain up to date information on irrigation development in Nigeria. It involves the collection, collation, compilation, and classification of irrigation projects in the country.

The Government Of Nigeria, through the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources has embarked on a number of programmes aimed at promoting sustainable agriculture and rural development. The programmes and their associated activities are:

1. Agricultural Land Resource Programme: The objectives of this programme are to select suitable lands for the production of specific that can increase crops through soil survey and land evaluation.

2. National Seed Service (NSS) Programme: The objective of this programme is to produce high quality crops for Nigerian farmers within a commercial environment of sound certification and quality control and to sell high output quality seeds and seedlings of selected arable tree crops, namely oil palm, rubber, cotton, groundnut, soybeans, gum arabic, etc. Over 2,460 kg of foundation seeds have been produced by the project for Research Institutes and out growers respectively.

3. Agricultural Finance Programmes: This is another programme whose objective is to provide loans and credits to small scale farmers. This is done through some agricultural oriented financial institutions such as the Nigerian Agricultural Co-operative Bank (NACB), the Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme (ACGS), and the Farmers Credit Scheme (FCS). Farmers have been supported financially through this programme for the purpose of increasing crop production.

4. Establishment of the Federal Agricultural Coordinating Unit (FACU): This Unit is primarily responsible for the provision of planning and implementation support to the activities of the ADP in the country.

5. The National Agricultural Research Project (NARP): This Planning was set up to strengthen the country’s agricultural research system and ensure availability of food through adequate domestic production in the country. Within the network of Agricultural Research Institutions, five handle food crops, three are for livestock; one (NSPRI) completes research on storage of agricultural and food products; while three handle mechanization research including the design, fabrication, and servicing of food processing machines. The impact of the NARP in boosting food production has not been sufficiently realized perhaps due to lack of adequate support and ineffective programme coordination. With recent reorganization and assured funding, NARP is expected to increase food production during the next decade.

6. The Strategic Reserve Scheme: At its second inception, the objective of this Scheme is to undertake the storage of excess grains during the harvest for release when prices are high in the market. This stabilizes the price and makes grains available all year round.

7. Establishment of the National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA): The Government’s main objective in establishing NALDA is to transform rural peasantry by mobilizing human resources and other support services to open up new lands for increased food production. The Authority has embarked on some activities (bush clearing, land preparation, farm infrastructure development, soil conservation and environmental issues, soil survey, evaluation, soil testing and capacity) to provide baseline data for agricultural related activities and advisory services to agricultural land users. The NALDA 1997 work plan proposes to open up more enclave farming communities during the operating season and will focus on land development in cooperation with the Agricultural Land Resource, Forestry, Department of Agriculture, and Agricultural Cooperative.


Nigeria have given high priority to its freshwater resources due to the growing concern at the increasing stress on water supplies caused by poor use patterns, affecting both water quality and quantity. Futher more, the Government through the Ministry of Water Resources and Rural Development, in Nigeria was undertaking a number of planning designed to protect the quality and supply of freshwater resources in the country to avoid some pollution. 

In these cases, The low lying, flood prone areas near rivers that become of water resources and streams and in inland areas also will be attention from the Ministry. The twin problems of soil erosion and flood control are addressed through the Department of Soil Erosion and Flood Control. The agency was created in 1991 to oversee the mitigate these problems and the improvement area of devastated lands. The Federal Ministry of Water Resources and Rural Development responsibility to handles inland erosion and flooding, and the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing is responsible for marine flood control and erosion problems.

Legislation and Regulations 

For the the Integrated Water Resources Development and Management programme area, the Ministry has prepared the Water Resources Decree 101 of 1993 to give the legal framework for the development of the water resources in the country of Nigeria. The Decree places ultimate to responsibility for the proper development of the water resources on the Ministry of Water Resources and Rural Development in the country.

Strategies, Policies and Plans  

To the Integrated Water Resources Development and Management planning area, the government of Nigeria have prepared the Nation’s Water Resources Master Plan for the 1995-2020 period which was completed with the technical assistance of the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) between 1992 and 1995 for the development in Nation’s water resources.

If we can see in the past, the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation sub sector was totally not coordinated. At the same time, various methods and equipment were used with little or no thought given to the sustainability of the systems nor the ability of the benefit communities to operate and maintain them overall. The Strategy and Action Plan direction standards for the methods and equipment to be used to action.

Policy of national water supply is completed and approved at the National Council on Water Resources and Rural Development meeting at Kaduna in November 1995 discuss about the sustainability of water. It provides the guidelines and direction towards development for water supply development up to the year 2015 become reality.

One of the main problems is Flooding in one form or other affects at least more than 20% of the nation’s population, it’s faced both urban residents and rural dwellers. Flooding is a threat to physical infrastructures in the area, including residential accommodation, commercial, and industrial properties, roads, rail lines, bridges and so on. It also believed destroys all farmlands in Nigeria, including standing crops that is important for the farmer. Losses due to flooding run into billions of Naira per year and cost to improve it’s always increasingly.

The future plans of Nigeria to achieve effective management of urban, river, and coastal flooding include

a) Enforce compliance with town planning,urban laws,edicts

b) Build embankments and levies along rivers and coastlines prone to flooding.

c) Establish a rainstorm early warning system it’s can be remainder to community.

d) Establish and monitor weather stations, and river and tidal gauges.

e) Ensure appropriate management and maintenance of dams.

f) Ensure proper maintenance of existing drainage channels.

g) Enforce environmental sanitation laws in Nigeria.

Other invasive weeds mostly can give effect to waterways. Currently hamper normal economic activities in reverie areas where the spread of the weeds have been exist and can block waterways. They also impend free river communication on waterways, and above all, the spread of the weed obstructs fishing activities and destroyed water quality. Nigeria’s future plans and strategy to eliminate the water hyacinth that can give pollution and other invasive plants in all water systems is to: a) Inventory the spread of water hyacinth and other invasive weeds in all the river systems; b) Develop an infestation index map to determine control options; e) adopt an appropriate integrated control option to ensure that the weeds are no longer a menace; and f) encourage sub-regional cooperation.

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Approval is pending for the study of the Impact of Climate Change on Water Resources with Particular Reference to Flood Susceptible and Drought Prone Areas. This project has been submitted to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) for their participation. GEMS or Water Nigeria is a important component of the Global Environmental Monitoring System with the overall objective of monitoring the quality of freshwater supply throughout in Nigeria. The programme is support by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Health Organization (WHO).

It can be monitors some water parameters and provides information on the suitability usage of water for human routine consumption, agricultural, commercial in business, and industrial uses. Several of the activities under the planning focus on a) Strengthening National water quality monitoring in Nigeria; b) Improve analytical capabilities and data quality assured; c) Addressing critical freshwater quality issues in order to propose policy options and control measures for the development and d) Assisting participating laboratories by the provision of technical advice, analytical reference samples, and training opportunities.

The Federal Environmental Protection Agency (FEPA) is coordinating the programme within the country. Participating several agencies include the National Institute for Freshwater Fisheries Research (NIFFR), New Busa and the National Water Resources Institute (NWRI), Kaduna. A network of stations on rivers, lakes, and reservoirs has been established with instrumentation for the purpose of collecting samples for analysis and development in treatment water quality.


In term of natural resources in forests, Effective mechanisms are being developed to harmonize cross sectoral policies related to forestry for example the famous forestry is, environment, agriculture, livestock, fishery and so on. Presently, the National Forest Policy is being reviewed under the aegis of the recently created Ministry of Environment.

The Federal Department of Agricultural Land Resources (FDALR) is currently, on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD), articulating Agricultural Land Use and Practices Policy for the improvement in the country for development areas in Nigeria.

Legislation and Regulations 

There is no Land Use Policy in the country. There is however, a Land Use Act. States are being encourage to derive their legislation from the national framework made by government. A national forest and wildlife law is being developed and implemented with the involvement of all stakeholders in the country.

There is have no forest certification practice in the country. However, we can see that public involvement on forest certification is being articulation in the proposed revised policy which will encourage private sector and NGO participation in the public involvement. It is become proposed that a National Working Group (NWG) on Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) and certification be set up to finalize the criteria or indicators for development Sustainable Forest Management in the country.

The activities that implemented promote the use of forest products in place of products made of non renewable materials:

Impose low tariff on wood products

Impose for the Reasonable pricing of wood products

Must Under valuation of forest products

Impose High cost of non-renewable materials especially energy

Value system and traditional beliefs – preference in taste for food or delicacy prepared with fuelwood.

Strategies, Policies and Plans  

Nigeria started implemented the National Forestry Action Plan (NFAP) in around 1990 with the assistance joint of FAO and a grant of US $690,000 from UNDP. At the same time, to ensure the greatest commitment and supporting at the highest and at all levels of Government in Nigeria, the National Advisory Council that assisted by a National Technical Committee, was become inaugurate generally in 1994. The project was concluded in 1995 and the final NFAP report has been submitted. The next stage is to use the report to canvass for international funding from donors to implement the action plans made by government.

The annual rate of deforestation in Nigeria is of major concern and a viable option to mitigating this is through implementation and made enforcement of sound Forest Policy in Nigeria. Towards achieve this objective , the country is in the process of review her 1988 Forest Policy. Also being prepared is Environmental Guidelines on Logging and Fuelwood Extraction in Nigeria. It is hoped that when these two instruments are enforced Nigeria would achieve attain sustainable development in economic and utilization of her natural forest resources.

A workshop in agricultural land use and become practices have been conducted and proceedings printed to implementation. Sectoral meetings have been held to articulate and review key areas to be addressed in the policy that implemented. This area are now become subjected to further deliberations with a view to synthesizing the issues that can form the main instrument of the policy. It’s will be later reviewed by the Legal Unit before as a whole package is developed for further deliberation and enactment by the National Assembly to become process.

As Presently, the country have different policies within sub sectors of agriculture and the environment involved in land use in Nigeria. There is need for integrated planning and management of all rural development programmes there. This will be reduce conflicts and guarantee better resources use. At the same time, some international organizations include the FAO, World Bank (IMF) , UNDP, ADB, DFID (ODA), Ford Foundation, for example, strategies have been formulated and developed for effective and efficient in sustainable management of a number of forest reserves in Nigeria.

In recognition of the changing strategy for natural resources management, the national forest and wildlife policy is become reviewed to make its implementation more efficient and to be better respond to emerging issues in forest sustainability development in the area. The review also towards supporting, the productivity of small holder farmers and to improve access to credit and other inputs that needs.

The strategy to achieve the target of 25% of the land area as forest is to:

Impose to Ban the export of log wood until the 25% reserve forest cover is achieved;

Provide a policy and institutional framework favorable for private investment in trees and forest resource management;

Effort to Increasing community participation in forest management and utilization in the country.

Establish sum of total of 15 million ha of plantation for various purposes such as shelterbelts, watershed conservation, forest fruit trees, Gum Arabic.

Promote agro forestry with multi purpose tree species to diversify farm produce and improve the soil environment;

Encourage private sector industrial plantations especially in already degraded forest estates;

Adoption protection forestry development strategies which includes shelterbelt establishment, afforestation of eroded sites, stabilization of sand dunes.

Promote community woodlots which could include forest fruit trees as whole and fuel wood plantations

Improve efficiency of the use of fuel wood

Manufacture affordable bio-mass stoves;

Developed alternative sources of energy such as solar energy for good environment

Effort to support research into conservation and improvement of soil, genetic resources, silviculture, utilization of forest products, agro forestry, wildlife, and afforestation of difficult sites

To Support human resources development in the country.

It is proved that Non Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) contributed development substantially to the rural economy and hence strategies are being developed for the achievement of high potential NTFPs in each ecological area of the country. It’s no compensate is provided for forest owners who market environmental benefits to the society generally. Incentives will be given to provided to enable them to manage their forest more better and sustainably, at the same time to facilitating their access for the improved tree seeds in their communities.


The policy objectives that implemented and mandate of the Nigerian Department of Agricultural Land Resources, established in 1980, have been refocused since the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) to cover sound planning and management of land resources consistent with the provisions of Agenda 21. This planning become more importance to manage resources of land correctly and efficient.

Erosion is a continuous process. Once started, there is urgent need to stabilize all existing erosion sites to stem the rate of soil degradation and loss of lands, forest resources, and property. In addition, there is a need to restore all those badlands and gullies that are amenable to restoration. The Nigerian strategy is to overcome this problems is

a) Prepare and implemented a comprehensive National policy on soil, coastal erosion, and flood control in the country

b) Formulate and to enforcing regulations for soil and water conservation especially in erosion prone areas that identify.

c) Try to Complete National watershed delineation and characterization for use as a basic for developing and implemented an aggressive management and enforcement programme to protect and maintain the quality of the nation’s area lands, water, and coastal resources in all areas in Nigeria.

d) Prepare a intermittent master plan for the importance management of soil and coastline erosion and flood, and giving advise the Federal Government on the financial requirements for plan implementation.

e) Complete possibility and scientific studies on soil erosion and it’s related flood problems for the design of appropriate integrated recovery control measures.

f) Complete public awareness campaigns on the dangers of environmental degradation arising from poor land and water management practices.

g) Provide and promote training on environmental issues as they relate to flood, erosion, land degradation, and water conservation.

h) Promote integrated ecosystem management for agriculture, land use, soil and water conservation, rural development, and coastal resources management including environmentally sound recreational use.

i) Consolidate National capacity by personnel development, provision of training facilities and research on prevention climate related ecological problems in ecosystem.

j) Consolidate capacity of the Environmental Management Support System (EMSS) for remote sensing data gathering, GIS facilities, and development of a disaster/environmental data bank.

k) Effort to Support agro forestry and integrated coastal zone management.

l) Encourage planted fallow in abandoned farmlands using soil enriching species.

Its associated activities are a source of considerable environmental damage to surface water, groundwater, and land. Health and safety risks are also considerable for people working in mines or living close by. The resulting deterioration of the environment and human health, are seen in existing mining wastelands all over the country, especially in the Middle Belt States, including Plateau, Bauchi, Niger, as well as Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, and Enugu.

The degradation of the natural environment has a negative effect on the long term growth potential of the country, even though immediate economic benefits are being derived by individual enterprises. It is important, therefore, that all approvals to initiate mining should be carried out in an environmentally sound manner, so as to minimize negative impacts. In addition, all abandoned and closed mining sites should be reclaimed.

The strategy to achieve this involves:

a) Developing an inventory of all existing and closed mining sites;

b) Enforcing compliance regulation with all National Mining Laws and Regulations, especially the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Law, the Safety Code and Accident Prevention Regulations that must be implemented

c) Enforcing mining wasteland reclamation measures for closed mining sites.

d) Providing financial incentives to helps and encourage the reclamation of abandoned mining sites.

e) Encourage public participation in community through dialogue with affected communities and other directly interested parties on the environmental aspects of different phases of mining activities in the country.

f) Adopting environmental sound mining technology and practices in all phases of mining activities, especially appropriate technologies to reduced environmental impacts, including those from small scale mining operations in the area.

g) Building capacity in environmental management in the mining industry.

Soils in Nigeria are variable due to variations in the geology and climate. Most predominant in the country are the utisols which cover about 46% of the total area of the country in Nigeria. Such soil performs very well under good planning and management though it is of moderate to low productivity in income of production. When we analysis Only 6% of the country is covered by entisol, the high productive soil in the all areas.

Nigeria have been category into eight Land Resource Zones, namely semi arid, dry sub humid, subhumid, humid, very humid, ultra humid, plateau, and mountain zones. Among them if we can see, if not all of this ecological fields have witnessed pressure resulting from uncontrolled in socioeconomic activities leaving a large proportion of the land parched in Nigeria . From perspective ecological and economic standpoints, soil erosion is probably the most serious give environmental problem and it’s can be affecting negative effect on the nation’s soil and land resources in Nigeria.


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