FOREST RESOURCES AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY: A FOOD SAFETY NET TO RURAL YOUTH FARMERS IN NIGERIA (A REVIEW)
This article reviewed forest resources and environmental sustainability as a food safety net to rural youth farmers in Nigeria with the aim of documenting the challenges and prospects of these concepts towards food production for vulnerable groups in the country. The forestry sector is highly important in the Nigeria’s economy, given the fact that forests supply not only timbers and nutritious fruits but also fibres, fire woods and other non-timber forest products for industrial and non-industrial uses, which enhance households’ income and food availability. Moreover, they provide a number of ecosystem services (habitat, biodiversity, carbon storage and so on), which, although sometimes without direct commercial value, are essential both locally and globally as a source of food safety net for vulnerable groups (youth, women and others) living in rural areas. Evidently, the forest ecosystem comprises of two components (abiotic and biotic). This article explores the concept within the context of specific disciplinary areas and sets forth for a basic understanding of the term “environmental sustainability” as an expansion of common perception of the nature of human activity. It also connects the ecological concept of interdependence of man and his environment; serve as a source of information for environmental and agricultural development managers which may enhance food production based on the reviewed policies and programmes. However, these might eventually ensure quality policy formulation in area of forest management, and possibly encourage youth involvement in forest conversation programmes of government and non-governmental organisations that focused on food production in the country, in nearer future.