Group Develops Environmental Monitoring Guide For Niger Delta Communities | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Group Develops Environmental Monitoring Guide For Niger Delta Communities

Posted: Feb 16, 2016 at 2:55 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Igoniko Oduma,Yenagoa

A resource material for environmental monitoring and reporting for use in Niger Delta communities: Community Monitoring Guide has been developed by an environmental non-governmental organisation: The Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF).

The Executive Director of HOMEF, Nnimmo Bassey, disclosed this yesterday in Port Harcourt during a workshop on ‘Community Resilience for Environmental Monitoring and Reporting for Egi Communities in Rivers State’.

Bassey clarified that the Community Monitoring Guide was developed to assist communities that host oil and extractive industry activities.

Published as a handbook, the Community Monitoring Guide illustrates the procedures and actions required to safeguard the environment from oil exploration and other mining activities.

Bassey explained that the material resource  was developed by HOMEF after extensive research, field visits and consultations with Niger Delta communities  in a forum known as Community Dialogues.

According to him, the foundation had commenced a capacity-building project aimed at training communities to monitor their environments and report any breach of existing laws on the environment.

He also disclosed that  volunteers who pledged to serve as Ecological Defenders also participated in the training programme.

“The participants pledged to carry out monitoring activities related to petroleum resources extraction activities in Egi land,  to identify environmentally negative and positive of oil company operations in Egi land.

They agreed to insist on and ensure compliance with all relevant national and international environmental laws and standards.

They also resolved to insist on environmental impact assessment and environmental plans to limit the impacts occasioned by extractive activities in Egi land.

The trainees are  to effectively create awareness and train others for environmental monitoring and protection in communities where extractive activities are carried out,” Nnimmo said

He further explained that the training workshop was part of the group’s effort to build community capacity to monitor and report on incidents in their environment.

He said the group had held a similar training at Bori, the traditional headquarters of Ogoni land  in October 2015 and planned  to have more training there this year preparatory to the cleanup process promised by the Federal Government in line with the UNEP Report.