DESTRUCTION of the environment affects us all, but we still are not acting as quickly as we should to address its causes.
The majority of Tanzanians don’t understand the risks environmental degradation poses to economic and social structures.
This is why Minister of State in the Vice-President’s Office responsible for environmental issues, January Makamba, raised an alarm when talking to members of the Tanzania Chamber of Minerals and Energy over the weekend.
In a country which has seen wanton deforestation and destruction of water sources in the past half century, the minister challenged mining companies to take a leading role in environmental preservation in areas where they operate.
The perilous rate of environmental degradation has its roots on the lack of education among the populace. By investing in quality education, we can set the next generation on the right path to addressing the looming environmental crisis facing the country.
Education and environmental preservation can work together filling knowledge gaps and understanding the impact of climate change on one’s life. This is especially true for the poor people in rural areas who are vulnerable to crop failures and natural disasters such as landslides and floods, caused by climate change.
If people understand that their world is changing and that the likelihood of future disasters is also increasing, they can build resilience and learn to adapt to the sudden and slow stresses of a changing climate.
Similarly, knowing the measures available to address climate change can open up vast opportunities for economic growth. Investors should be made to understand that sustainable solutions can increase wellbeing and create additional economic opportunities.
Education also furnishes the technical knowledge needed to build a better future through innovation – one that includes clean and safe energy, sustainable agriculture and smarter cities.
Addressing the dangers of climate change is not only an existential imperative; it is also an opportunity to move toward a cleaner, more productive, and fairer path of development.
Indeed, climate change news is mostly negative, in fact, downright depressing, as glaciers melt away, torrential storms hit coastlines and embedded droughts scorch the countryside.