Mrs Halima Mohammed, the Desk Officer for Global Environment Facility (GEF), on Sunday advised state governments to key into the GEF grants to implement environmental projects in their states.
Mohammed said in Abuja that the biggest challenge the project was facing was the inability of the states to tap the available resources.
She said that the states would always want the Federal Government to initiate ideas and projects for them in spite of the sensitisation on the grants.
``They (state governments) always want the Federal Government to initiate projects for them, which is not fair, that is a big challenge we are facing.
``We have discussed this at the National Council on Environment and pleaded with the states to come up with proposals to access the grants.
``We have grants there which are an opportunity for them to tap into, so, we are appealing to them to come up with proposals.
``Let them contact the Federal Ministry of Environment for more information on how they can address such issues on environment,’’ said the offical.
GEF is the largest funder of environmental projects in the world and it has three components of its projects.
The components are the full size, the medium size and the small grants.
According to her, small grants component of GEF is a grant below 50,000 dollars, medium size is between 500,000 and two million dollars, while the full size is from two million dollars and above.
Nigeria has received 3.6 million dollars in four years from GEF, under its Small Grants Programme to implement 113 environmental projects in 25 states.
Mohammed, who is the GEF’s Desk Officer in the Federal Ministry of Environment, said that Lagos State had already benefitted from the grant to implement its sustainable transport programme.
She said that GEF had given five million dollars grant to Lagos State to implement its sustainable transport project.
She attributed the development strides recorded by the state to the fact that it embraced the programme.
On the big size component of GEF, the official said that Nigeria had also received the grant of 6.8 million dollars to implement the GEF section of FADAMA III programme.
FADAMA III is a project aimed at increasing the income of users of rural land and water resources on a sustainable basis.
``The FADAMA III project is still ongoing but we have Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project (NEWMAP) that GEF is supporting.
``GEF is also supporting `Less Burnt for Earth Clean Project’ in Kano.
``The project is producing manure from waste, instead of burning them, they convert them to manure for farmers and the project is really benefiting them,’’ she added.