Nigeria’s transition to net zero must not cause hunger, crises -Hon. Onuigbo

By Benjamin Arida://

Chairman, Climate Parliament Nigeria, Hon. Sam Onuigbo, has advised the federal government that attaining net zero green house gas, GHG emissions by 2060, must be done in such a way that the transition does not create poverty, hunger, crises, and other issues in the country.

Net zero means that a country must reduce its GHG emissions to as close to zero as possible and offset the residual emissions through natural carbon sinks, that is: measures that absorb carbon, such as forestation and technologies that capture carbon.

Onuigbo, while addressing participants at the GLOBE COP26 Summit held recently at the Scottish Parliament, Edinburgh, expressed worries on the impacts of climate change across the world and its increasing damage to human livelihood.

The lawmaker representing Ikwuano/Umuahia North and Umuahia South Federal Constituency of Abia State in the House of Representatives, said “no one should be left behind, this energy transition must be just, fair, inclusive, and above all have a human face.”

Onuigbo, who is also the President, GLOBE Nigeria; Vice-President (Africa) GLOBE International, pointed out that “Nigeria is an oil and gas based economy and thus the transition must be done in such a way as to avoid the issue of stranded assets.”

He, therefore, advised that in attaining net zero, it must be done in such a way that the transition does not create poverty, hunger, crises, and other issues: 

“It is a difficult journey, and we are sadly almost out of time. 

“So, the time to act and act decisively is now. In all this, I must stress that in line with the Sustainable Development Goal 17 which talks about partnerships for sustainable development, and ultimately stresses that no one should be left behind, this transition must be just, fair, inclusive, and above all must have a human face,” he stressed.

Also in his presentation at the Scottish Parliament on the issues of Net Zero Laws, NDCs and Green Recovery from the Nigerian perspective, he emphasized on the security implications of climate change in the country as visible from the Sahel challenge, stressing the need for collaboration among stakeholders on how to address the existential threat of climate change in Nigeria. 

“I’ll speak briefly actually from the Nigerian perspective on the issues of Net Zero Laws, NDCs, Green Recovery, and like she said how we can get it right but this one is strictly from the Nigerian angle. Nigeria as some of you are aware is from Western Africa and as today the population is about 211 million people and out of this number about 60% of that are very young people who are raring to move.

“The crisis coming from the Sahel and I’m talking about areas bordering Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso, coming down to Chad that is now largely a difficult area to inhabit because desertification, drought and the rest of them have combined to make those places very difficult to farm or to do agriculture. Consequently, we see a push from there down to the Northern part of Nigeria and this has disrupted a lot of things bringing with it insecurity, and loss livelihood means,” he said.

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