The Federal Government on Friday, September 16, 2022, unveiled the Nigeria Cooling Action Plan (N-CAP), to promote sustainable and affordable access to cooling system.
The Minister of Environment, Mr Mohammed Abdullahi, while unveiling the N-CAP at the commemoration of World Ozone Day (WOD) in Abuja, said the objective of N-CAP was to deliver the global environment agenda.
The minister was represented by Mr Charles Ikea, Director, Pollution and Environmental Health of the ministry.
Abdullahi said that the WOD is an annual event that commemorates the date of the signing of the Montreal Protocol (MP) on substances that deplete the Ozone layer in 1987.
He said the Montreal Protocol has continued to provide a platform for more than 198 countries to work together to phase out Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS), so as to protect the Ozone layer.
Abdullahi said that the protocol was the most successful environmental agreement to date, with universal ratification.
The minister said that the theme for the 2022 WOD is “Montreal Protocol at 35: Global Cooperation Protecting life on Earth”.
Abdullahi said that the theme highlighted the protocol’s positive impact on the Ozone layer.
He explained that Nigeria signed the Protocol in 1988 and subsequently ratified all its related amendments, to further protect the climate.
Abdullahi said the ministry, with United Nations Development (UNDP), United Nations Industrialisation Development Organisation (UNIDO), had been implementing the MPs/ODS phase-out programme in Nigeria.
According to him, in order to ensure the operationalisation of the N-CAP being unveiled, an implementation plan is developed and agreed by stakeholders.
“The Plan includes the strategies to be adopted, activities or actions to ensure the success of these strategies, the responsible parties and timeline.
“A major strategy of the N-CAP that will support the transformation of the market of inefficient cooling appliances to more efficient ones, is the rebate scheme.
“This is where a large number of energy efficient cooling appliances need to be procured and exchanged with obsolete and inefficient ones at a subsidised price,’’ Abdullahi
The minister said that the scheme would require adequate funding, urging financial institutions to co-operate and support the ministry.
He said cooperation of banks would also be needed in the procurement of efficient air conditioners that met the level of the air condition of the Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS).
“This is recommended in the N-CAP or even higher. These efficient air conditioners can be installed in bank`s ATM rooms and other spaces within the banking hall,’’ Abdullahi said.
He called on other development partners to support the government in the implementation of the N-CAP by providing additional funding for the rebate scheme.
“In the hospitality sector, we also seek the co-operation of hotels to procure efficient cooling appliances, within the level of the MEPS recommended in the N-CAP.
“As for the agricultural sector, the N-CAP will play a key role in the efficient preservation of food, thereby, preventing food losses/spoilage, through a sustainable and efficient cold chain infrastructure.
“In this, food will be transported from the farms to retail outlets at a favourable temperature that will prevent food spoilage.
“This will hopefully reduce contact between farmers and herders and prevent their incessant clashes,’’ Abdullahi said.
The Regional Director, UNIDO, Mr Jean Bakole, said that 2022 marked the 35th year of signing the Montreal Protocol on substances that depleted the Ozone layer.
Bakole, who was represented by Dr Osuji Otu, National Programme Officer, UNIDO, said that the world achieved industrial success by discovering and manufacturing cooling gases, aerosols for firefighting.
He said that the manufacturing of the items had created problems for the environment.
Bakole assured that the UNIDO would continue its commitment toward supporting the government to promote inclusive and sustainable industrialisation development.
By Vivian Emoni