The Place of Environmental Adult Education in the Enhancement of Rural Occupational Practices and Sustainable Socio-Economic Development to Foster Reversal of Nigeria’s Economic Downturn

Caroline L. Eheazu


Unprecedented skyrocketing in global fossil oi l(petroleum) prices in the early 1970s launched Nigeria into massive foreign exchange earnings. Gradually, oil became the mainstay of the country’s economy to the extent that budgets, salary structures and general infrastructural development became predicated on oil revenue. This virtual economic monoculture gradually diminished Nigeria’s economic buoyancy as income from oil progressively dwindled since the 1980s. The ultimate outcome is the economic recession being experienced in the country currently (2016). The situation has induced the Nigerian leadership to evolve a policy of diversification of the economy through large-scale production in agriculture and other internal and foreign exchange revenue yielding livelihood assets (many of which were previously designated rural ventures) as positive bail-out sources for the country’s economic recovery. To achieve success, the enhancement of rural occupational/career practices and socio-economic development strategies has been deemed an inevitable component of the economic revitalization process. This paper examines the implications of the new mode and processes of achieving the desired speedy and large-scale production (use of chemicals, mechanization, manufacturing and so on) for human health and the rural environment. The paper harps on and explains the necessity of environmental education as part of the career enhancement process for rural adults who constitute the hub of Nigeria’s rural workforce.

Keywords: Economic diversification; rural workforce; environmental education; occupational enhancement; resource sustainability.

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