Environment ministry joins in search for alternative to fossil fuels

Federal Ministry of Environment has identified and recommended a plant, Jetropha, as a viable green alternative to fossil fuels, as the current government works to diversify the economy.

It said the ministry was proposing Jatropha value chain project as a means for successful production of a viable green alternative to fossil.

Minister of Environment, Amina Mohammed, who confirmed this, said that the plant could be grown in all 36 states, with about 12 states affected by desertification for pilot scheme.

She disclosed that the project would create an avenue for diversifying the economy through empowerment of the people, taking climate action to fight desertification as well as reducing poverty.

According to her, the ministry was to embark on sustained advocacy visits to secure the commitment of the states towards creation of a new green economy in the rural areas.

Mrs Mohammed noted that Jatropha had been identified by the Nigerian bio-fuel policy and incentives 2007 as the most preferred non-food plant for bio-fuel feedstock for production in the country.

She went further to say that the ministry would organise a national conference on Jatropha to fine-tune strategies for its production with a view to reaping the huge environmental dividends that come with the production, processing and marketing of the plant.