The Great Green Wall: Nigeria implementation Status

Olatunde Dare
February 2, 2022
min read

The Great Green Wall


The Great Green Wall effort aims to restore 100 million hectares of degraded land in Africa's Sahel region. It's a race against time to handle the region's complex problems. The African Union launched it in 2007 to change the lives of millions of people in the Sahel. The 8,000-kilometre natural wonder of the world will span the full breadth of the continent once completed.


More than 20 Africa nnations have signed on to the Great Green Wall, and more than $8 billion has been raised and promised in support. Under the direction of the African Union Commission and the Pan African Agency of the Great Green Wall, the program brings together African nations and foreign partners.


Why the Sahel / Great Green Wall?


In a climate-vulnerable region plagued by drought, scarcity of resources, conflict, and migration, the only way out is to restore the landscape to combat desertification and provide livelihoods for a heavily reliant population on agriculture. As a result, the Sahel's Great Green Wall is crucial.


Greenwall Objectives


The goal is to restore 100 million ha of degraded land by 2030, sequester 250 million tons of carbon, and create 10 million green jobs. The plan will benefit communities living along the Wall in the following ways:

●       cultivate fertile land, one of humanity's most valuable natural resources

●      Increase the number of economic opportunities for the world's young people.

●       Increase food security for the millions of people who go hungry daily.

●      Develop climate resilience in a region where temperatures are rising faster than anywhere else on the planet.

●       Create a new world wonder that stretches across Africa for 8000 kilometres.


Achievement so far:


Most of the great green wall member countries have recorded several accomplishments, with some countries faring better than others.

The United Nations' status report, released in September 2020, was hardly promising. Only 4% of the Great Green Wall's 2030 goals have been met, with only 4 million hectares restored out of a total of 100 million hectares. Ethiopia, which has a massive reforestation program, accounts for half of that total. Suggesting a shift in ambition in some GGW countries.

While some countries like Ethiopia and Senegal began implementing the Great Green Wall activities as early as 2008, others did not join until 2014, when the United Nations ratified the project declaration.

Nigeria implementation Status

Nigeria has established a 1,359 km contiguous shelter belt that serves as a windbreak from Kebbi State in the northwest to Borno State in the northeast while also planting 7.6million seedlings. As a result, 2,801 ha of land out of 800,000 ha have been restored. This data demonstrates a lack of ambition and interest in achieving its contribution to the GGW and, at this pace, won't meet its target by 2030.

Similarly, the National Agency for Great Green Wall created to combat land degradation and desertification in 11 northern Nigerian states and improve food security has allocated N1.3 billion of its CAPEX to purchase motorcycles, street lights, and other unrelated projects to its mandate. Unfortunately, it was created to help pad the budget for 2022, not to fulfil its order.

In addition, the Ministry of Environment has allocated N67.8 million to four (4) recreational parks in Cross Rivers, Kaduna, Borno, and Yobe States to construct "GunArmories" even though the Ministry of Environment is not a security agency.

Currently, we urge the government to prioritize the Great Green Wall projects that will benefit citizens the most and not mishandle funds.