PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari has affirmed Nigeria’s resolve to continue to play significant role in supporting global efforts at addressing climate change.
Minister of Environment, Dr Mahmood Muhammad Abubakar, stated this while addressing the Ministerial High-Level Segment of the 25th Session of the Conference of Parties (COP25) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change; and related meetings on behalf of President Muhammadu Buhari and the Nigerian delegation in Madrid, Spain
In his words, “It is obvious that the challenges of climate change are enormous, Nigeria calls for sustainable joint and collaborative efforts to tackle the problem. Nigeria is willing to continue to be part of the solution.”
Speaking further, the minister emphasised that Nigeria faces grave social, economic and environmental threats consequent to climate change due to its dependence on climate-sensitive resources.
“Climate change impacts are already threatening the survival and livelihoods of our people. The devastating loss of range and crop lands to desertification each year in the northern part of the country, resource use conflicts, loss of forest cover and threatening sea-level rise on the significant coastline in the southern part of the country are a stark reminder of our vulnerability to climate change,” Dr Mahmood emphasised.
Enumerating some of the steps taken by the Buhari administration to mitigate the effect of climate change, the minister revealed that: “Nigeria is advancing policies and initiatives aimed at addressing significant challenges occasioned by climate change such as reviving the Lake Chad, increasing forest cover, deploying smart renewable energy solutions, halting and reversing desertification and land degradation, flooding, ocean surge; gender mainstreaming as well as engaging the youths in climate governance.
“Nigeria has also embraced issuances of Green Bond to raise finance for implementation of green project, which has helped the government to fundamentally reorient its financial flows, within the economy, through the greening of the Federal budget and capital market. It is hoped that the issuance of the third Sovereign Green Bond would triple Nigeria’s GHG emission reductions, stimulate more economic growth and catalyse investment in social programmes.”
Speaking further, he reiterated the commitment of Nigeria towards the fulfilment of its country’s obligation under the Paris Agreement and actualisation of goals of its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs).
Expressing the expectations of Nigeria from the climate change conference, DrcMahmood said that Nigeria fully aligns itself with the call by the AGN that COP-25 expeditiously, as a matter of priority, conclude negotiation on the special needs and circumstances of Africa; and the call for the simplification of the guidelines for accessing funds under the Green Climate Fund (GCF) as well as the need for the GCF to remain accountable under the COP.
He added that Nigeria expects to see the conclusion of the review of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage; agreement on Article 6 on market mechanism; continued support and enhanced financial provision by developed parties towards NDC enhancement processes and full implementation of the activities thereof to raise ambition and pursue a long-term climate agenda; goal of mobilizing $100 billion by 2020; refining the technical aspects of the transparency framework; capacity building; adaptation; and decision on Gender Action Plans amongst others.
The minister stressed that Nigeria hoped that the conference will result in quick resolutions of all outstanding issues pertaining to the Paris Agreement Rulebook as carried over from COP24 to enable its operationalization and strengthening global response to the threat of climate changeto ensure a sustainable future for our people and planet.