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The great green wall and recharging of Lake Chad: two sides of the same coins


The great green wall and recharging of lake chad: two sides of the same coins

photo credit: global citizen

Climate change is a threat to the entire world. The impact of climate change is a defining issue of our time. And through the impacts of climate change, we have been faced with climate processes and events at the same in the same continent. The great green wall is a strong hold toward the actualisation of the sustainable development goals. The degradation of our landscape put us in multi-dimensional problems; increase in poverty, food insecurity, hunger, gender inequality  and other climate related crises. So degradation itself affects all life on earth.Approximately, two-thirds of the continent’s productive land is degraded. By 2030, the ambition of the initiative is to restore 100 million hectares of currently degraded land; sequester 250 million tons of carbon and create 10 million green jobs. Ecosystem restoration in itself is a solution. Of which the restoration order follows from; Niger, Mali, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Chad, Sudan, Mauritania, Senegal to Djibouti with a total of 156.1 million hectares. Due to the continued expansion in land degradation, more African countries are now included in this restoration process. However, in 2017, Security Council Resolution 2349 recognised “the adverse effects of climate change and ecological changes among other factors on the stability of the region, including through water scarcity, drought, desertification, land degradation, and food insecurity''.

We cannot actualize the great green wall initiative without restoring lake chad via versa.

The both initiative of restoring lake chad that has shrunk by 90% and the actualization of the great green wall (GGW) are two sides of the same coin. intrinsically, this restoration agenda points to the same direction with a robust solutions in solving the defining issues of our time.   Interestingly, population is increasing in Sub-Sahara Africa yet climate change is decimating the livelihood of those person. There are two school of thoughts; population is Africa problem in tackling climate change while the second school of thought says population is not part of the problem rather it should be an added advantage in solving the defining issues of our time. They are both pointing to the same direction:governance. If there are no alternative livelihoods, the recharged lake will still be faced with more crises because lake chad is a unique lake-- it is endorheic. Initiative like that of the great green wall will help not just to combat climate change but to provide green job for people in this region and beyond as part of the solution that can be used to solve unemployment. In the process, there will be lesser dependence on the lake chad. In the bid to actualize restoration, underlying crises such as the regional instabilities, insecurity, armed conflicts and terrorism must be tackled.

It’s time for restoration

The restoration of our degraded landscapes through climate governance is what Africa needs to mitigate the effects of climate change and to adapt to the impact of climate change. Climate change is a tool that has been disruptive to Africa’s development. As climate change is an urgent threat, so does it need an urgent solution. For a decade now, we have been faced with clashes between the farmers and herders due to droughts and desertification that has driven people from their livelihoods. This has brought widespread violence across the continent and uncountable death. Most African economies employ more than half of it population to farming activities either on a large or small scale. So, ways to sink the biggest carbon of our time lies on restoration. Hence we need to reclaim our landscape from the impending doom towards our human security.  And every effort to restore our landscape must include the host community itself because they are part of the solution and taking them out of the conversation is like no work done; such restoration agenda will fail which are part of the reasons why we are yet to actualize our initiative. Everyone is needed to be part of the solution.

By Oladosu Adenike (


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