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Nigeria hails U.S. return to climate change agenda

By Terhemba Daka, Abuja
20 October 2021   |   2:10 am
The Nigerian government has praised the Biden administration’s return to the global climate change agenda. Vice President Yemi Osinbajo disclosed this when he received at the Presidential Villa...

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The Nigerian government has praised the Biden administration’s return to the global climate change agenda. Vice President Yemi Osinbajo disclosed this when he received at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, a U.S. government delegation led by White House Deputy National Security Advisor, Mr. Jonathan Finer, who is currently visiting Nigeria.

Osinbajo said: “We are happy that the U.S. is fully on board with climate change and back to the table on this issue. One has to commend the drive this U.S. administration has put behind climate change.”

Four years ago, the Trump administration announced U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement on climate change. But earlier this year, the Biden administration announced the restoration of America’s commitment to the Agreement.

Reiterating Nigeria’s position on transition from fossil fuels to clean energy, ahead of the net-zero emissions 2050 target, Osinbajo said: “We are concerned about what has been going on, especially around gas as an effective transition fuel and how many Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) and some countries are insisting that gas projects should be defunded.

“This is of principal concern to us. It is one that we have made central to our advocacy and it is one of the issues that we intend to promote at the COP26.”

He noted further: “We have done the costing for it and all of what is required to be able to hit net-zero by 2050. Also, what the implications would be, given the constraints, and how realistic it would be to get to net-zero by 2050 or not.”

Osinbajo said Nigeria looks forward to participating in the Democracy Summit President Joe Biden would be hosting later in the year.

He also took the opportunity to express the gratitude of the Federal Government to the U.S. government for donating over 3.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to Nigeria.

Earlier, Finer informed the Vice President of a potential partnership with Nigeria on the G-7 Infrastructure Programme – Build Back Better World, which the U.S. President has made a priority.

Also in attendance were the American Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard; the Nigerian National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd); and other US and Nigerian senior government officials.

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