The United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change, an environmental treaty on climate action was adopted in 1992 and signed into force in 1994. Following from this, numerous countries have expressed interest and readiness in combatting, tackling, addressing and reducing the effects of climate change through a convention. All countries (Nigeria inclusive) that have ratified the Convention, constitute the Parties to the Convention and meet annually at the conference of Parties (COP). 2018 is making it the 24th year of meeting in Katowice to deliberate and finalise rules and follow up on the recently released report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which highlighted the increased impact of global temperature and the need to global warming below 1.5C by 2040.
Global climate change governance is diversifying rapidly: in recent years, political attention has been acknowledging the increasingly important role of not only state actors but non-state and subnational actors such as cities, local states, private firms, investors, foundations, civil society organisations, and cooperative initiatives. However, much more efforts are being made by the developed world. Perhaps because this is more felt in the developed world but developing countries must not hold back until disastrous issues are experienced before more propelling actions are taken. A just-released report by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) shows that global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions rose again during 2017 after a three year hiatus, highlighting the imperative for countries to deliver on the historic International Climate Agreement; Paris Agreement to keep global warming to below 2°C above pre-industrial levels. Implying that to meet the 1.5°C limit, countries would have to quintuple their efforts.
Over the past few years, the effects of climate change which includes: sea level rise, flood and high temperature has been prevalent in Nigeria and this signifies strong call to action. Therefore, since most (if not all) activities and engagement are been handled at the Federal level of Government, the federal level of government would have to work in tandem with numerous actors which includes non-state and subnational actors (NSAs) towards achieving her implementation plan.
Nigeria’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) Implementation plan is committed to reduce greenhouse gas emission by 20% and a further reduction by 45% with the support of international community. However, most subnational government in Nigeria are not well informed about the COP and approaches towards contributing to the implementation of Nigeria’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and with this gap, the populace would hardly be able to know what is to be done, activities to be halted, amongst others. Therefore, when the populace is left behind, then it implies that the signed agreement is just a mere propaganda at the grass-root level.
Whilst Nigeria has made efforts towards the issuing of her second green bond valued at NGN 10.69bn, which appears like a very huge efforts compared to most of her counterparts in sub-saharan Africa, we must be reminded that we shouldn’t compare our efforts with that of our neighbours and relax with the impression that others should also make a move. We should be abreast that our topography, population and other undermining environmental factors presents us with a difference scorecard and we would focus on our plate in mitigating and saving our own portion of the earth.
It would be interesting to know that there are numerous financial instruments and funnels which Nigeria could leverage on to access grants addressing clean energy, flood management, low-carbon transport system, renewable energy, amongst others, if well identified and harnessed. However, it would be great if non-state actors (NSAs), subnational entities and the communities are well informed, thus leaving no one behind and collectively winning the Climate battle.
As Nigeria joins her counterparts in deliberations at COP24, Nigerian’s anticipate her government to gain insights, establish more transformative connections towards addressing positive climate actions on mitigation, loss and damage, adaptation, unleashing climate finance funding, strengthening food security, reducing water scarcity, halting sea level rise, oceans and renewable energy, amongst others as being shared by Parties upon return to Nigeria, for Nigerians awaits her government in high regards.
- United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) (2018). Emissions Gap Report 2018. https://www.unenvironment.org/resources/emissions-gap-report-2018
- Ayotomiwa Alabi (2018). COP24 and what is in for Nigeria. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/cop24-what-nigeria-ayotomiwa-alabi/
- CSR-in-Action (2018). csr-in-action.org/green-bonds-leverage-pad-nigerias-sustainable-development/