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ERA/FOEN, others seek end to fossil fuel projects in Africa

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In a renewed effort to reduce climate obstacles and tackle other environmental issues, five civil society groups have called on African governments to stop the acceptance of fossil fuel projects driven by European countries through their Export Credit Agencies (ECAs).

The environmental rights groups involved in a research document released to the media are Environmental Rights Action/Friends of Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN), Friends of Earth-Ghana, Abibiman Foundation-Ghana, Environment Governance Institute-Uganda and Friends of Earth-Togo in cooperation with Milieudefensie/Friends of Earth-Netherland and Both ENDS.

The groups analysed the prospects of a Just Energy Transition for Africa. They also analysed the question as to what best solution is for limiting global warming to 1.50C on the one hand and facilitating universal energy access on the other hand.

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Further, they analysed the question of what role public financial institutions like ECAs could play in terms of promoting a green energy future in Nigeria and other developing countries.

Speaking on the research, Executive Director, ERA/FoEN, Dr. Godwin Uyi Ojo, stated: “In Nigeria’s oil fields, oil spills and gas flaring have resulted in massive environmental degradation and marine resources depletion which local people depend on for livelihood.

“The locals have continued to blame especially Shell Oil Company, and the Nigerian government for their impoverishment and human rights violations.

“To ensure improved clean energy access, there is need for a post-petroleum economy devoid of oil and gas and embracing renewable energy sources to reduce carbon footprints and address climate change impact.”

Niels Hazekamp of Both ENDS lamented: “Despite international climate agreements and national climate ambitions, export credit agencies continue to support fossil energy projects on a large scale.”

Nosa Tokunbor of ERA/FoEN said: “The only way out is the phasing out of finances for fossil fuel while channeling same to support renewable energy projects.”

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