Prof. Edward D. Wiafe, Dean, School of Natural and Environmental Sciences (SNES),
The University of Environment and Sustainable Development (UESD) has called for the development of the country’s human resource to ensure better management of the ecosystems.
He said it was essential to teach others about the importance of the environment and how they can help save ecosystems.
The Professor made this comment in a statement issued to commemorate the celebration of World Environment Day, which was celebrated on the theme, ‘Ecosystems restoration’.
He also suggested that damaged ecosystems could be restored by planting trees on land where forests have been cut down.
He said people could be encouraged to live in a way that does not hurt the ecosystems and draw their attention to the goods and services, while stronger collaboration could be fostered with indigenous people to manage their ecosystem goods and services and respect their livelihoods.
Prof. Wiafe called for the need to establish protected areas to protect rainforests, savannah, wetlands, coastal and estuaries and police them and get involved with organizations and programmes that operate in ways that minimize damage to the ecosystems and environment.
He said according to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), Ecosystem services make human life possible by providing nutritious food and clean water, regulating disease and climate, supporting the pollination of crops and soil formation, and providing recreational, cultural and spiritual benefits.
However, these have an estimated value of $125 trillion, yet these assets are inadequately explained in political and economic policies, which indicates that there is insufficient investment in their protection and management.
Prof. Wiafe said for all these to be possible, ecosystems need to properly function but the fact is that all ecosystem services are currently under threat. Ecosystem loss means depriving the world of a lot of goods and services at a time we can least afford to save them.
‘’It has been noted that drivers of threats to ecosystems remain constant and are growing in high intensity in all ecosystems’’ he noted.
Adding that, globally, the important direct drivers include habitat change, climate change, invasive species, overexploitation, and pollution.
He said to this end, all hope is not lost yet, the theme for this year’s world environment day encourages everyone to reimagine, recreate and restore our ecosystems to continue enjoying their goods and services.
Story by Kwaku Aboagye Apenteng