Nigeria needs $177b to implement Paris agreement, says Okereke
For Nigeria to implement the Paris agreement, especially the National Determined Contributions (NDCs) over 10 years, the country needs about $177 billion, says the President, Society for Planet and Prosperity (SPP), Prof. Chukwumerije Okereke.
Okereke, who doubles as Director, Centre of Climate Change and Development, Alex Ekwueme Federal University, Ebonyi State, Nigeria (AEFUNAI), was guest speaker in a webinar hosted by the Association of Sustainability Professionals of Nigeria (ASPN) as part of the 2022 induction programme of the professional body.
Okereke said that investing in green infrastructure is the only way for Nigeria to scale up climate implementation and achieve long-term low carbon and climate resilient development.
He said the new Nigeria Climate Change Act signed by President Mohammadu Buhari, provides a robust legal framework needed to improve the nation’s readiness and drive a full-scale implementation of climate change action that will put country on the path to a just and green economy.
Speaking on “Nigeria’s climate commitments and implementation readiness: workable strategies, frameworks and Regulations, ” Okereke decried the paltry climate finance status of Nigeria and recommended that the government establishes an institutional arrangement for the oversight and coordination of climate finance activities, identifies funding gaps and assesses public as well as private financing options and develops a country climate investment plan.
Okereke stated that Nigeria has shown a determination to deliver ambitious climate commitments, pronouncements, and pledges in an era of austerity but noted that concerted effort was now needed to translate the pledges into concrete policies and actions that will help Nigeria build resilience to climate change and achieve sustainable green economic growth.
He cited the revised NDC, which has 20 per cent unconditional and 47 per cent condition emission reduction pledges, the 2050 Long-Term Vision for Nigeria (LTV-2050), Nigeria Energy Transition Plan,2060 net zero pledge by President Buhari at COP26 in Glasgow, the Nigeria Climate Change Act and the ongoing Nigeria Deep Decarbonation Project (DDP- Nigeria) as some examples of credible and ambitious climate efforts made by the government.
He highlighted concrete steps that Nigeria can take to move beyond policy pronouncements into implementation state. According to him, Nigeria has not yet developed full GHG inventory (GHGI) and prescribed the key next steps on this to include the establishment of institution for the oversight and coordination of data; as well as establishing data collection, documentation and management system.
Okereke called for designing and review of the current mitigation policy landscape, development of a detailed appraisal of priority actions for key sectors and open access to financing of mitigation actions.
Among climate actions prescribed by him include clean cooking, climate smart agriculture, distributed renewable energy, green transportation and energy efficiency, which have the potential to deliver climate objectives as well as wider sustainable development goals such as green jobs, clean air, better health, food and energy security.
Okereke said more modeling work and economic analysis were required to quantify net benefits and aid science-based policy.
He said a big area of opportunity for climate action in Nigeria is to mainstream climate change into other sectors of the economy, including transportation, water and irrigation and energy. According to the Federal Ministry of Finance, Nigeria’s core infrastructure stock is currently estimated at 30 per cent of GDP and falls short of the international benchmark of 70per cent.
He observed that Nigeria’s aspiration and infrastructure target for 30 years is estimated to need no less than $3 trillion infrastructure investment. He also said cited the International Finance Corporation (IFC) figure, saying that the Paris Agreement has opened nearly $23 trillion in opportunities for climate-smart investments in emerging markets between now and 2030.