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UNDP/GEF teaches Bayelsans how to convert water hyacinths to fertilizer

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As part to efforts to curb the menace of water hyacinths in the Niger Delta, the United Nation Development (UNDP), in collaboration with the Global Environment Facility, has began training workshops on how to convert hyacinth to compost (fertilizers) for farm use.

In association with Environment and Climate Change Amelioration Initiative (ECCAI), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), the sensitisation workshop was meant for rural dwellers and farmers, with a view to teaching them to turn their waste to wealth.

The training, which had taking the team across the three other states in the Niger Delta, birthed at Zarama-Epie in Yenagoa Council to demonstrate how the people could use water hyacinth to make compost for both farming and commercial purposes.

Executive Director of ECCAI, Mrs. Victoria Esa, said the nuisance caused by water hyacinth, which is prevalent in the region, could be converted to viable economic ventures that would lead to bountiful agricultural products and poverty reduction in the region.

She revealed that the sensitisation and training programme was scheduled to cover Akwa Ibom, Rivers, Bayelsa and Delta states, due to their susceptibility to the periodic invasion of water hyacinths.  

Speaking at the event, Project Director of the GEF-UNDP implemented project, known as the Niger Delta Biodiversity Project (NDBDP), Mathew Dore, said the thrust of the project was to contribute to the conversation and sustainable use of globally significant biological diversity in the region.

Represented by the project’s Research Assistant, Michael Ekwemuka, he said the response of the people so far has been very impressive.
Another resource person, a lecturer from the University of Benin and Consultant to the project, Mr. Chris Amah, said considering the huge economic benefits accruing to the oil companies and the governments, it is necessary for the interest of the rural dwellers to be given favourable consideration.

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