The Thirty Million Film Premier

On June 16th, 2016, African Youth Initiative on Population, Health and Development (popularly known as AfrYPoD) and Drink Water Awareness Foundation (DWAFoundation), with technical support from UNDP, co-organized a free screening of the film Thirty Million. Thirty Million is a documentary by the United Nations about how up to 30 million Bangladeshi would have to flee their land because of rising sea levels caused by climate change! 

Afterwards, to bring it home to the country, there was a panel discussion about mitigating the effects of climate change in Nigeria. I was privileged to be part of the panel along with other sustainability professionals Dr. Laz Ude Eze (without whom the event wouldn't have happened), Uzoamaka Ugochukwu and Mark Amaza; and moderated by Adaora Onyechere. 

Interestingly, we could grasp so many parallels between Bangladesh and Nigeria, especially as we are already experiencing rising sea levels as well (although at a slower rate than Bangladesh). The discussions were around these parallels. For example, Dr. Eze talked about how our warming climate is increasing our risk to tropical diseases and other negative impacts; Mark discussed how we need data to work better for us; Uzoamaka discussed linkages between gender and climate change; and I spoke about people's perceptions of climate change and the linkages with population. 

The audience participation was pretty active too - issues from our current lack of sanitation, our flippant behaviours in relation to the environment, the use of renewable energy, and so much more.

I particularly loved how we ended the discussions on an uplifting note - prompted by a participant, we talked about how despite the challenges, there are opportunities in terms of products, services, revenues and cost savings! 

Thankfully, you can watch the film online for free here! While you watch, take note of anything that reminds you of Nigeria and our current situation with climate change. 

The event was supported by UNDP and other friendly organisations. You can visit Thirty Million for more information about the film.