Save Sahara Network (SSN) joined the entire world to celebrate the 2020 World Environment Day on 5 June 2020 from 4:00 pm Lagos time. The webinar was the maiden edition for Save Sahara Network on World Environment Day (WED) and was titled “Biodiversity and Connections to Humans“.
As released by the United Nations, the 2020 WED focused on “Biodiversity” with the theme ‘Time for Nature‘. This focused on the central roles of biodiversity in providing essential services that support life on Earth, especially in human development. In line with the focus of United Nations, SSN also focused on biodiversity and how they connect to people.
The webinar presentations were specially packaged to expose participants to the practical aspects of peoples’ utilisation of biodiversity and implication on conservation. Some of the specific areas that were covered include specific roles that different stakeholders can play in protection of biodiversity from cities to urban areas, relevance of citizen science to conservation, and practical steps to take in sustainable management of biological diversity.
Dr Fola Babalola (Host and Speaker)
Fola Babalola holds PhD (Forest Economics) obtained from University of Ibadan, Nigeria. He is currently a Senior Lecturer and Researcher in the Department of Forest Resources Management, University of Ilorin, Nigeria. His field of specialization is forest socio-economics with research focus on interdependence of forest and people, and how these affect livelihoods.
Dr Babalola is a Senior Consultant to Food and Agriculture of United Nation (FAO) on small-scale forest enterprises in Africa. He was awarded Vice Chancellor Postdoctoral Fellow and currently and a Visiting Lecturer at University of Pretoria, South Africa. He has supervised a number of masters and doctoral students aside more than 40 undergraduate students. He has published a book, and more than 100 research articles in journals and conference proceedings. Also, his personal and team researches have won various international research grants, with fellowships and travel sponsorships to attend scientific gatherings.
He has facilitated various capacity building programmes for conservation professionals and led organization of workshops and conferences within and outside Nigeria. With passion to apply his research and experience in solving environmental challenges, Dr Babalola founded Save Sahara Network (www.savesaharanetwork.org), with focus on saving of nature and empowering of people at grassroots.
Abubakar S. Ringim (Guest Speaker)
Ringim is a Conservation Biologist. He advocates for the protection and sustainability of natural resources and wildlife. He held B.Sc. Zoology from BUK, and M.Sc. Biodiversity Conservation from the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. His current researches focus on citizen science and pressing conservation issues, including urban ecology, protected areas, zoonotic diseases, and sustainability. Ringim is involved deeply in the Nigeria Bird Atlas Project (NiBAP), where he is serving as the Secretary of the Arewa Atlas Team. In 2019, Ringim was among the 17-member committee (Technical Working Group) selected for the Development and Implementation of Wildlife Disease Surveillance System in Nigeria (REDISSE Project). In 2019, He served as the Secretary, LOC for the Sixth Nigeria Tropical Biology Association conference. Ringim Co-founded the Federal University Dutse Conservation Society and serving as its Secretary. Ringim is a member of many committees in his University, such as Chairman, Committee on maintenance and revenue generation of the Federal University Dutse Zoological garden, Member, Faculty of Science Seminar, Workshop and Conference Committee, and Assistant Coordinator, Field Trip Committee. He is a recipient of two commendation letters from his University Management. Broadly, Ringim has a strong interest in trying to promote biodiversity conservation and impact in Nigeria.