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Amara Nwuneli: Nigeria Should Enact Practical and Sustainable Policies To Combat Climate Change

The 16-year-old also spoke on her climate change document, saying it was made to inspire people to spark changes in their own way.

Nigerian Author and Social and Climate Activist, Amara Nwuneli, has said that the Nigerian government, in a bid to combat climate change, should enact more practical and sustainable policies, as well as create environments that will make sure that everyone plays their role providing solutions to climate change.

In an interview with ARISE NEWS on Sunday, the 16-year-old activist, who has worked with several organisations in creating policies to protect against climate change and also carried out fundraisers to help the victims of the effect of climate change, also spoke on a documentary that she recently released called “Heat Of Change.”

Speaking on what the government can do to address the problem of Climate Change, she said, “I believe that we are actually starting to pick up our pace, we are starting to see that this is a true problem. But we are yet to actually enact practical policies, sustainable solutions that will move Nigeria forward, whether it is banning plastic, which I know is a drastic measure, but will help us, I know Kenya is doing that right now.

“Whether it’s creating spaces for people to interact with nature that are government funded, like I know there is Lufasi Park, I know there is the Lagos Conservation Centre, but creating more of those spaces, taking us back to where we were actually connected to our natural world, to our environment, to the animals. There are a lot of things that we can still do to collaborate, whether it’s also making organizations have climate green policies to ensure that every worker is aware of what climate change is and what they can do, there’s a lot that we can do.”

Nwuneli then addressed the inspiration behind her fundraising activities, saying, “In 2019, my house was actually flooded, we had to rebuild after, we had to move out. It left me feeling helpless, overwhelmed, just seeing that there was something so existential that can affect and completely destroy and disrupt someone’s life. And I mean, I’m privileged to be able to be in a family that can bounce back especially after that. But in the East, especially where floods are major where it can create so many migrants- I know in 2021 we had over two to three million Nigerians who were migrants.

“But I actually started a fundraiser using the platform Go Fund Me, and we were able to raise a huge sum of money to rebuild two schools in Anambra. And through that, I was able to connect with a lot of local rulers, Igwes, Or just principals of those schools and figure out ways to create actual sustainable change ensuring that not only were those schools built and resistible to the floods that were to come, but to ensure that there are policies in place that will create and just spark this change, and ensure that there’s a way to protect themselves even after.”

Amara then spoke on her recently released documentary which addressed the dangers of climate change. She said, “This film, for me, is intended for a wide range audience, especially for the international audience, but it’s driven to Nigerian youth. You have seen a change that we have started to create with the EndSars movements, with different movements around the world. And I believe, of course, we are inheriting the earth, it is our future that we are going to love with. And we have the power, we have the voice, and we have the energy to create this change. So, it is made to inspire people.”

The Preserve Our roots founder, speaking on her hopes for the future, then said, “My hope for the future, and the way that the younger and older generation can collaborate, is through just communication, through sharing stories, through communicating with one another, building relationships and making actual change. I believe a lot in policies, in creating those spaces to communicate. And especially now in 2024, Preserve Our Roots, the organisation that I started, is actually creating a sustainable park, showing that education through play, education through learning and collaborating with one another. So, I believe that there are a lot of spaces that we can start creating to working together, especially in this new year.”

Ozioma Samuel-Ugwuezi

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