Clean Air Forum

Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA) is partnering with AirQo to organise a five-day Clean Air Forum in Lagos with the theme: ”Advancing Collaborations and Multi-Regional Partnership for Clean Air Actions in African Cities”, from July 8th-12th, 2024.

The Forum is aimed at addressing the issues of air pollution in Africa and to chart a course for improved air quality in the continent through an acceptable policy framework for a healthy citizenry.

The General Manager of LASEPA, Dr. Tunde Ajayi, speaking at a pre-event press conference held on Friday in Alausa, said the State Government is fully prepared to co-host the event with AirQo towards tackling the problem of air pollution troubling the region.

He disclosed that over 350 participants from over 40 countries will be attending the conference in Nigeria.

According to him, air quality communities in practice in Africa, comprising different stakeholders, including policymakers, representatives from civil society organisations, the private sector, development partners, and the scientific communities will be at the event.

Ajayi averred that the clean air forum is being organised by AirQo, a pan-African Research Initiative at Makerere University, Uganda in partnership with the Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA) and hosted by the Air Quality Monitoring Research Group (AQMRG) and EUEPiN from the University of Lagos, among other stakeholders.

The forum, according to the LASEPA boss, will focus on fostering knowledge sharing and transdisciplinary collaborations while particularly emphasising the need to strengthen regional networks and multi-regional partnerships for sustained interventions for clean air in African cities.

“It is a collaboration aimed at bringing experts together to share ideas on how to improve the air quality in Africa for healthy citizens.

The Forum is a unique opportunity to Explore innovative solutions for air quality management in Africa; Develop new partnerships and collaborations; Enhance knowledge and skills development; and Expand professional network for increased capacity building”, the General Manager stated

He added that a study from the Global Burden of Disease indicated that air pollution is responsible for around 1.1 million deaths annually in Africa. It has become the second leading cause of death on the continent, largely due to rapid urbanization and industrialisation.

Ajayi further stated that effective environmental control for sustainable growth is crucial to good governance in Lagos State, noting that it was the reason for making it the second pillar of the Governor Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu administration’s T.H.E.M.E.S plus development agenda.

He added that the State government will continue to collaborate with experts from across the world to tackle the menace of climate change, pollution and other environmental challenges that may have direct negative impacts on the health of the citizenry.

In his remarks, Professor Bainomugisha, the AirQo Project Lead, stressed the importance of the Clean-Air Forum, noting that the event underscores the urgency of addressing and championing clean air in Africa’s urban environments.

“The Forum will provide pathways to air quality management for African cities and increase awareness of air quality and air pollution issues for better health outcomes in Africa”, Bainomugisha stated.

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