The Nigerian Institute of Town Planners has said it plans to address the issue of climate change as it affects the country’s environment.
The institute said the move was part of its commitment towards promoting sustainable development of the country’s environment and protecting it from the impact of climate change phenomenon.
The 1st National Vice President, NITP, Mr Toyin Ayinde, said the institute had established the Nigeria Green Cities Summit as an avenue to address these issues.
According to him, the summit, which is a biennial event, has as part of its principal goals, bringing together stakeholders across various sectors of the economy and groups, including multi-lateral bodies, to brainstorm on the key challenges confronting the urban environment.
Ayinde said the theme of the maiden edition, scheduled to hold in Abuja between August 27 and 29, would be ‘Brown to green: Enhancing wellness and livability’.
He said, “As you are aware, one of the issues that have received global and national attention is that of climate change and the need to evolve adaption strategies for combating it. The level of degradation experienced in Nigerian major cities, arising from abuse of the environment, has been compounded by the unplanned rapid urbanisation and decayed infrastructure.
“There is no indication that the scenario will be reversed within a short time. Hence, the need to create a forum whereby key players and actors in city development will discuss, examine, analyse and evolve solutions to matters of environment-friendly settlements.”
He explained that among other things, the summit would develop strategies for combating the various problems militating against evolving energy efficient, green friendly, pollution free, livable and investment friendly towns and cities across Nigeria.
He said it would also stimulate stakeholders to taking mitigation and adaptation activities for identified problems.
“Participants at the summit, many of whom have confirmed their participation, are local and international individuals/organisations, representatives of Ministries, Department and Agencies of federal, state and local governments, manufacturing/industrial concerns, multi-lateral agencies, professional associations, consultants and civil society organisations. About 260 participants are expected at the three-day event,” he said.
Ayinde said renowned experts would also speak on various thematic areas such as change and city resilience; new urbanism and green economy; sustainable land use planning and urban Design; as well as green building and smart construction.
Others, he said, would be green transportation and walkability; public health, waste management and safety; and green space, recreation, tourism and livability.
“The summit is to be declared open by the Governor of Imo State, Emeka Ihedioha, who has shown substantial commitment to promotion of green in major cities of the state, since he assumed duty two months ago,” Ayinde said.
Meanwhile, the institute has inducted 139 new town planners.
According to the President, Town Planners Registration Council of Nigeria, Prof Layi Egunjobi, this brings the total registered town planners to 4,753 while those that are registerable stand at over 3,000.
At a training workshop for the inductees, Egunjobi said he was confident the new members would serve as the messiahs of a resurgent urban and regional planning profession ready to move along proactively.
The President, NITP, Mr Lekwa Ezutah, urged the inductees to adhere to the vision, mission, aim, objectives and core values of the institute and TOPREC law including the professional ethics and code of conduct.
He said the period of impunity had gone, adding that violations of ethics in any form would be meted with appropriate sanctions and followed up with employers of labour ensuring the disciplinary measures were implemented to the letter.