Lagos – Global recognition came the way of Eko Atlantic city, the brand new city being developed to combat the effects of climate change through reclamation of nine square kilometres of land lost over the years to the Atlantic, as the Lagos State Government and its private sector partners on the project, South Energyx, got the Clinton Global Initiative Commitment Certificate.The Certificate, received by the State Governor, Babatunde Fashola, SAN, and Chief Executive Officer of South Energyx Nigeria Limited, Mr Ronald Chagoury, took place on the third day of the fifth annual meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), before the special breakout session with the theme, “The Infrastructure of Human Dignity: Protecting the Most Vulnerable,” in New York, United States.
Reading the citation before making the presentation, Mr Nicholas Kristof, a Columnist with The New York Times, declared that the Lagos State Government and South Energyx are committed to “combating the devastating effects of climate change by reclaiming nine square kilometres of land for a new city, Eko Atlantic”.
Eko Atlantic will be an environmentally conscious city built with nature, to restore an original coastline and protect Victoria Island, Nigeria, from the severe risk of ocean surge and flooding. The Initiative, founded by the 42nd President of the United States, Mr William Jefferson Clinton, is a forum dedicated to discussion and collaboration among world leaders, business executives, heads of NGO, philanthropists and other activists, to tackle pressing challenges facing the global community. The Commitments to Action is a unique feature of CGI membership, aimed at ensuring translation of practical goals into meaningful and measurable results through new, specific, and pragmatic initiatives, which vary in size and duration focusing on diverse concerns, regions, and types of activities. Speaking to members of the international press earlier on Wednesday, after visiting the Eko Atlantic city’s stand at the CGI’s Exhibition Centre, Fashola reiterated commitment of the state government to deliver a safe environment to the next generation.
According to him, government participation through the city project and his personal attendance of the CGI meeting were practical demonstration of the commitment to protect lives and property.
” The coastal erosion challenge of Lagos State today is a fallout of the increasing threat to the environment, climate change, and rising water levels and as a coastal city, we remain absolutely committed to ensure that we safeguard the future for the next generation. That is the importance of our commitment. lt is no longer just a promise; it is an unyielding commitment to deliver a safe environment to the generation behind us,” Fashola said. While acknowledging the pre-eminence of the CGI as an international forum for discussing issues of the global challenge to the environment, he commended the private sector partners of the state on the project, South Energyx, for its courage and doggedness in working with the government to turn “what was an environmental disaster into a major asset for Lagos and for Africa.”