New Telegraph

Climate change major challenge facing humanity, says Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has described climate change as one of humanity’s major challenges. Meanwhile, he has directed the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN) and Minister of Environment, Mohammed Abdullahi to review the Climate Change Act 2021 to take care of the lapses. Speaking at the inauguration of the National Council onClimateChangeyesterday, he highlighted the losses and damagecausedbythepervading floods in several parts of Nigeria as well as Pakistan, Bangladesh and other parts of East and Southern Africa. According to him, climate change is complex and dynamic, requiring multi-dimensionalandmulti- sectoral initiatives to address the impacts and avert its rapid advance. Buharisaid: ”Updateddata show increases in sea level rise, heat waves, wildfires, floods, desertification, drying wetlandsand manymoredisruptive climate occurrences.

”The latest Intergovernmental panel on climate change report warns that rising Green House Gas emissions could soon outstrip the ability of communities to adapt, and the window for taking decisive steps needed to spare our planet from the gravest impacts of climate change is rapidly narrowing. ”We cannot ignore what is happening in our local environment. The increasing recurrence of floods in several parts of the country is a wakeup call.” Buhari reiterated the determination of his administration to strengthen the national response to climate change and accelerate the implementation of decisive actions to reduce its impacts on the people and economy.

He reaffirmed that Nigeria remains a party to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which is an established international treaty to combat “dangerous human interference with the climate system”, inpartbystabilizing Green House Gas concentrations in the atmosphere. The President said: ”It is against this background that in November 2021, after COP 26 in Glasgow, I signed the Nigeria Climate Change Act despite noticeable implementation challenges inherent in the Act, to set the framework for mainstreaming climate change action, carbon budgeting and the establishment of the National Council on Climate Change.

”The council is tasked with the responsibility of formulating appropriate policies and other mechanisms for achieving low Green House Gas emissions, including green growth and sustainable economic development for Nigeria. ”In a clear demonstration of our commitments as enshrined in our Nationally Determined Contributions and the Net Zero-Target by 2060, I also approved, on 25th July 2022, the appointment of the Director General and Secretary for the National Council on Climate Change.” Buhari told the National Council on Climate Change to formulate appropriate policies for achieving green growth and sustainable economic development for Nigeria.

He therefore directed Malami and Abdullahi to initiate appropriate amendments to ”noticeable implementation challenges” inherent in the Act. The Council is chaired by Buhari, with Osinbajo as Vice Chairman. The Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum is also a member. Others are the ministers of Environment, Petroleum Resources; Budget and National Planning, Justice; Mines and Steel Development, Finance, Agriculture and Rural Development, Power, Women Affairs, Transportation; and Water Resources. The Governor of the Central Bank; the National Security Adviser; President of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria; a representative of the private sector on climate change or environmental-related matters (representative of National Conservation Foundation); a representative of the National Council on Women Societies; a representative of NationalYouthCongress, and a representative of the Civil Society Organisationarealso members of the Council. The Director-General of the National Council on Climate Change, Dr Salisu Dahiru, will serve as Secretary.

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