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Saturday, September 23, 2023

Nigeria urged to align policies to strengthen its climate action plan

A group of environmental stakeholders has asked the Federal Government of Nigeria to harmonise all its policies on climate change in order to fortify the country’s development of its national action plan.

Cross-cutting stakeholders during the one-day technical meeting on the creation of the national action plan on climate change in Abuja

Their argument is that the strategy will be critical in assisting the nation in meeting its mitigation and adaptation goals.

Salisu Dahiru, the director general of the National Council on Climate Change (NCCC), told the team of industry experts on Tuesday, September 12, 2023, during a one-day technical meeting held in Abuja to brainstorm on how to produce a national action plan on climate change for the country, that the anticipated document would help Nigeria achieve its 20% emission reduction target by introducing a carbon regime that will tax polluters and ensure they pay for their pollution.

According to him, the introduction of a carbon budget will clearly set a threshold for the amount of emissions that a person is allowed to produce.

“If an entity exceeds the prescribed emissions,” Salisu said, “the possibility of a tax, levy, or any other viable option can be engaged.”

In keeping with the country’s goal of achieving its net-zero goals by 2060, the director general revealed that the action plan is planned to be implemented within a five-year time frame.

In a similar spirit, Ibilola Essien, communications specialist at Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL), referred to the action plan as a critical document for Nigeria’s future.

According to her, the fact that Nigeria is working on developing a climate change action plan emphasises the severity and significance of the challenges as well as the collective resolve required to address them head-on.

These challenges, she claims, are far-reaching and necessitate rapid and decisive action to defend the country’s environment, communities, and prosperity.

Essien went on to say that climate action isn’t only about environmental stewardship; it’s also inextricably related to the country’s larger national vision.

“It holds the key to poverty alleviation, industrialisation, and sustainable development,” she said, emphasising the significance of the proposed plan for the country’s long-term progress.

As a result, the SEforALL spokesperson urged the government to view the plan’s development as a vehicle for attracting critical financing and technology from developed countries in order to meet the country’s climate change mandate.

In his presentation on the Energy Transition Plan (ETP), Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), and the development of a comprehensive National Climate Action Plan for Nigeria, Somkele Awa-Kalu, a representative of the Energy Transition Office (ETO) at the event, stressed the need to align the various government regulations on climate change through cooperation and taking stock of how activities are being implemented.

He appealed that the national action plan on climate change be evidence-based, information-driven, and transparent, and have a monitoring and evaluation system that examines its deliverables and successes.

Professor Emmanuel Oladipo, a climate change expert, underlined the significance of aligning the plan’s theme areas with those of the various national climate strategies.

According to Oladipo, who presented a paper on “Stock take and evaluation of relevant documents for the development of a national climate change action plan for Nigeria,” the plan should be based on in-depth analysis and focus on climate finance.

The professor of climatology argued that doing so would allow the country to fulfil its commitments under the Paris Climate Agreement and assist the various sectors of the nation in mitigating and preparing for the catastrophic effects of climate change on sources of livelihood.

By Etta Michael Bisong, Abuja

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