Youth in Nigerian Archdiocese Eradicating Plastic Pollution to Mitigate Climate Change

Members of Catholic Youth Organisation of Nigeria (CYON) of the Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja during the sensitization campaign against plastic pollution to mitigate climate change. Credit: ACI Africa

Members of the Catholic Youth Organisation of Nigeria (CYON) of the Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja are realizing a sensitization walk to draw the attention of the public about the need to eradicate plastic pollution in the environment in view of mitigating the effect of climate change.

Addressing journalists following the Monday, October 2 sensitization event, CYON Chaplain of Abuja Archdiocese, Fr. Cyril Osuji, said that the initiative is the Catholic youth response to the Holy Father’s call.

“The Holy Father Pope Francis has given the young people an assignment to help in protecting the earth,” Fr. Osuji said.

He added in reference to Pope Francis’ May 2015 Encyclical Letter on care for our common home, Laudato Si’, “Today we are practicalizing the document of the Holy Father to protect our environment from pollution, erosion, desertification and waste management.”

“The earth is crying for help and what we have demonstrated today is to get rid of plastic waste from Abuja, the nation’s capital and its environs,” the Nigerian Catholic Priest further said, and continued, “We are calling on the government to implement Laudato Si’ to protect the environment and mitigate climate change in Nigeria and the world at large.”


On his part, the president of CYON in Abuja Archdiocese, Frankline Ekenedilichukwu, said that the youth initiative to care for the environment in Abuja Archdiocese is to enable them appreciate the papal document and how it can be used to foster environmental conservation.

“Laudato Si’ is a document issued by Pope Francis to see how the Church can come in and help mitigate the effects of climate change and global warming,” Ekenedilichukwu said, and added, “For us as Catholic youth we are here to sensitize the public on the dangers of plastic pollution in our environment.”

He continued, “We are being confronted with erosion, blockage of drainages which is caused by indiscriminate waste disposal.”

The CYON president in Abuja Archdiocese further said, “We all know the dangers of blocking drainage systems; recently an Estate called Trade More estate in Abuja was flooded due to poor drainage system and blocking of waterway by plastic waste.”

“We have just walked through the Durumi district of the Federal Capital Territory Abuja to sensitize the people on the dangers of blocking their drainage system and we hope to replicate these throughout the nation’s capital city,” he said.

More in Africa

Ekenedilichukwu appealed to the government to “key into this project, because it has the capacity of creating jobs for the youth. The plastic waste we are picking can be recycled and turned into wealth for the young persons.”

“We also call for partnership from organizations both local and foreign to help us provide a recycling plant where this plastic waste collected by the youth can be recycled for wealth creation,” he added.

Abah Anthony John is a Nigerian Journalist with great enthusiasm and interest for Catholic Church Communication and Media Apostolate. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Mass Communication from Benue State University, Makurdi, Benue State Nigeria. He has vast experience in Print,  Electronic and Multi-Media Production.