||Our Disappearing Treasure Islands and Their Anthropogenic Threats
This year, the International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB2014), with the theme of “Island Biodiversity” was celebrated at the University of Lagos, Nigeria, under the auspices of the Biodiversity Society of the Department of Zoology popularly known as University of Lagos Biodiversity Conservation Society (UBCS). A society founded two years ago during the 50th anniversary of the existence of University of Lagos as part of the department of Zoology's mandate to promote biodiversity conservation and environmental friendly culture among students.
The Society has as part of its tradition to celebrate important dates that promote biodiversity conservation .This year alone, the Society has celebrated 2 of such days with IDB2014 as the second after the World Wetlands Day celebrated in February.
This year, IDB was well attended with both the undergraduate, postgraduate research students and lecturers alike in attendance. Novelty football matches were organised prior to the event to create awareness among students. The main event was celebrated with a symposium tagged ''Our Disappearing Treasure Islands and Their Antropogenic Threats''. The symposium started with a brief introduction of events led by the president of the Society Mrs F. Olaleru, followed by a keynote address from the Dean of Faculty of Science Prof. Mathew Olusoji Ilori, who identified islands as one of the major hotspots for biodiversity in today's world. He emphasized the economic and biological relevance of islands, and linked their preservation with conservation of genetic materials citing Madagascar and the Galapagos Islands as case studies. He encouraged students who are today's scholars and tomorrow’s leaders to fight for the future by adhering to practices that conserve our islands and their Biodiversity. The representative of the head of department of Zoology, Dr A.O. Otitoloju emphasized the need to fight climate change, to reduce greenhouse gases emission, and to reduce our carbon footprint by inculcating green culture as part of strategies to preserving the integrity of our disappearing islands. The guest speaker Mr Kukoyi identified the melting ice cap, sea level rising, global warming and greenhouse gases from anthropogenic sources as drivers of the disappearing islands of our planet, citing the example of the Maldives. He linked the increasing greenhouse gases and carbon footprint with increasing materialism of today's societies, vicious cycle of poverty among the growing world population, and the quest to keep track with current demand of globalisation. The symposium ended with a vote of thanks from the coordinator of the event Dr Akeredolu Excellence, who wrapped up the event enjoining the students to come up with a personal creed to save their planet by reducing emission through environmental-friendly practices.