On the mitigation of climate change
Sir: The fact that negative impacts of climate change are all around us is no longer news. What is important now is how to mitigate the rampaging effects of climate change. Substantial work on mitigation of climate change in Nigeria has been done but there is so much room for more work. The current mitigation policy landscape in Nigeria should be expanded. There is need to identify what mitigation measures are proposed and what mitigation measures are already in place. The level at which each measure will be implemented should also be established as well as the sectors that each measure will cover.
There is also need to analyse priority sectors and mitigation strategies within each sector. Based on Nigeria’s greenhouse gas inventory, sectors like transport, energy, agriculture, housing, mining, water resources, works should be given priority in terms of mitigating greenhouse gas emission. Sectors that contribute significantly to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product as well as offer economic and employment benefits should be given priority when implementing climate change mitigation measures because of the multiplier and ripple effects they have on the general well-being of Nigerians.
There is need to clearly establish how climate change mitigation is being integrated or will be integrated into national economic developmental plans to ensure that climate change mitigation contributes its own quota to national development. Mitigation options should be shortlisted and prioritized. Criteria for the prioritization should be established. The criteria should include mitigation potential, cost, technical feasibility and others. The relationship of each mitigation measure to development, job creation, air quality and health should also be considered. Cost-benefit analysis should be used to prioritize mitigation options. Jobs and economic impact models should be designed and used to make informed decisions on mitigation options. For instance, the job creation potentials of adopting renewable energy as a climate change mitigation option should be embraced.
Multi-criteria approach may also be embraced to prioritise mitigation options. Barrier analysis for each shortlisted option should also be done. This includes assessing the enabling environment such as domestic policy and institutional barriers for each mitigation option. It also includes understanding the mix of financial and non-financial measures that will be deployed to execute each mitigation option.
To effectively mitigate greenhouse gas emission, there is need to design a model of business- as-usual emission scenario and an emission reduction scenario.
Martins Eke is Programme Officer, Environment at Centre for Social Justice, Abuja