By: Mayen Etim
KADUNA, North-West, Nigeria – An Environmentalist, Mohammed Zakariyya, has said the current outbreak of Coronavirus pandemic and subsequent lockdown across the world has led to reduction in carbon emission, environmental pollution amongst others.
Zakariyya who led a team of Journalists and other Environmental experts on a tour of major streets in Kaduna metropolise under the lockdown on Saturday, said the air quality has improved under the coronavirus quarantine.
Zakariyya who is also a Director of a Non-Governmental Organization – African Climate Reporters, said the lockdown as observed in many states in the country has led to serious reduction in air pollution and environmental challenges,
which has resulted to serious decline in issues related to climate change and all forms of environmental degradations.
“Across the globe more factories and companies have shot down, with mandate for people to stay at home and this is becoming the new norm, people aren’t driving or flying.
“Nearly all countries around the world and cities are in lockdown. Borders are closing. Companies are struggling to stay in business and families are simply struggling to stay afloat, while Coronavirus is claiming more victims.”
The Environmentalist noted that Abattoirs, which pollutes the air through it methods of preparation of slaughtered animals with expired tyres are also affected by the lockdown and this has saved our environments from air pollutions.
“Most streets are now empty as most of the companies polluting the atmosphere are not working.
“The lockdown has also crippled activities of tanker-drivers, commercial vehicle such as taxis, tricycles and okada riders.
“Nitrogen Dioxide (NO₂) emissions, a major air pollutant, are closely linked to factory outputs and vehicles operating on the roads and it’s very harmful to both human and the environments,” he said.
According to the Director, the World Health Organization, (WHO) estimated 4.6 million people die each year from causes directly attributable to air pollutions.
“Many of these mortalities are attributable to indoor air pollutions. Worldwide more deaths per year are linked to air pollution than to automobile accidents.
“An estimated 12.6 million deaths each year are attributable to unhealthy environments due to human irrational activities which include burning expired tyres, smoke from trash dump cites in communities, and local abattoirs among others.
“Environmental risk factors such as air, water and soil pollution, chemical exposures, climate change, and ultraviolet radiation, contribute to more than 100 diseases and injuries across the world,” he added.
He suggested the use of clean technologies and fuels for domestic cooking, heating and lighting would reduce chronic respiratory diseases, cardiovascular diseases and burns.
Also, the Grand Patron of African Climate Reporters, Dr Yusuf Nadabo, called on citizens to strictly adhere to the social distance and stay at home order by the authorities to avert the spread of the pandemic.
While wishing the world a happy earth day celebration coming up on April 21, 2020, Dr. Nadabo equally urged people to keep their environments clean, saying Coronavirus is real.