New Telegraph

Mbah: Transparency And Access To Information Are Vital In Attracting Investors

How has the climate change crisis affected productivity in Nigeria?

Climate change has affected productivity in Nigeria in diverse ways. In the agricultural sector, extreme temperatures and season variations have decreased crop yield and increased food insecurity. And that is one factor contributing to food scarcity in the country. In the health sector, increased temperatures and varying precipitation patterns enable the spread of water-borne and vector-borne diseases, such as malaria and cholera, which are prevalent in Nigeria.

Health challenges lead to a decrease in the workforce’s productivity due to illness, increased healthcare costs, and a burden on health services. Now, the cost of medicines has skyrocketed, putting the country in the state where the human health is been challenged, which in turn affects the productivity of the country in virtually all sectors.

Is Nigeria in anyway responsible for attracting some of the effects?

Nigeria is not the cause of the climate change crisis affecting it. Nigeria just like many less developed countries is the recipient of the climate change crisis caused by activities carried out mostly in the more developed countries, especially the highly industrialised countries.

Economy to the crisis?

On a broader scale, these envir o n m e n t a l challenges affect economic productivity . For instance, fluctua- tions in agricultural output due to cli- mate impacts can lead to instability i n food prices and supply, affecting the entire economy. Additionally, adaptation strategies and infrastructure to combat climate change require significant investment, which can strain public and private financial resources.

Does the climate change crisis have the same effect in all the regions across the country?

No, it doesn’t. The effect varies from region to region largely due to the geographical, climatic, and socio-economic characteristics. For example, northern Nigeria is susceptible to increased temperatures and reduced rainfall, exacerbating desertification. At the same time, coastal and riverine areas of Southern Nigeria, including major cities like Lagos, are prone to increased flooding due to rising sea levels and intense rainfall events.

What do you think the country can do to cushion the challenge on its socio-economy?

Adopting strategies in various sectors can address the socio-economic challenges. In the Agricultural sector, enhanced agricultural practices like climate-resilient agriculture agroforestry, and afforestation need to be implemented—in the energy sector, expansion of renewable energy sources and promoting energy efficiency. Robust policy frameworks need to be implemented and foreign relationships leveraged.

You are an advocate of indigenous solutions to the climate change crisis, what do you mean by this?

Advocating for indigenous solutions to the climate change crisis means recognising and integrating traditional knowledge and practices of indigenous communities into broader climate action strategies. Indigenous people often have a deep connection to their environment and a wealth of knowledge about natural resource management that has and can be honed over centuries.

Do you think Nigeria can provide local solutions to the ravaging climate change crisis?

Nigeria can develop and implement local solutions to address the climate change crisis. The country’s diverse ecosystems, rich cultural heritage, and robust human and natural resources provide a strong foundation for local initiatives. Nigeria’s unique position and vast resources necessitate a comprehensive strategy that leverages the expertise and commitment of every sector.

From government and industry leaders to scientists, community organisations, and individual citizens, we all have a role to play in building a more resilient and sustainable future. The importance of fostering collaboration in areas like policy development and implementation, innovation and technology, community mobilisation and education, and investment and financing are paramount.

How long do you think it will take the country to find solutions to the lingering crisis?

The timeline depends on how proactive and insisting we can be as a Nation in our fight against this crisis. Years of damaging our environment cannot be undone in a few years of doing the right things but all we can do is effectively address and mitigate the impacts of climate change consistently. This is a big determinant of how long this can take us.

What is your stand on digital solutions to this crisis?

One of the most promising areas where digital solutions are making a significant impact on climate change is in the realm of renewable energy. Technologies such as solar panels, wind turbines, and hydropower plants are becoming increasingly efficient and cost-effective, thanks in part to advances in digital monitoring and control systems.

These systems allow operators to optimize the performance of renewable energy installations in real-time, maximizing energy output while minimizing environmental impact. Furthermore, digital platforms are enabling the integration of renewable energy sources into existing power grids, creating a more resilient and decentralized energy infrastructure.

In the agricultural sector, digital solutions are revolutionising the way food is produced, with significant implications for climate change mitigation and adaptation. Precision agriculture techniques, such as satellite imaging, drones, and sensor-based monitoring systems, allow farmers to optimize crop yields while minimizing resource inputs such as water, fertilizers, and pesticides.

By precisely targeting inputs and reducing waste, precision agriculture can help to reduce the environmental impact of farming and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions associated with agriculture. Additionally, digital tools are enabling farmers to adapt to changing climate conditions, such as shifting weather patterns and extreme events, by providing real-time data and predictive analytics for better decision-making.

At the heart of many digital solutions for climate change is the use of data to inform decision-making and drive innovation. Whether it’s climate modeling, predictive analytics, or real-time monitoring, data plays a crucial role in understanding the complex dynamics of the Earth’s climate system and identifying effective strategies for mitigation and adaptation.

With advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning, researchers and policymakers can analyze vast amounts of data to uncover patterns, trends, and insights that were previously inaccessible.This data-driven approach enables more informed decision-making across a range of sectors, from energy and transportation to agriculture and urban planning.

Financially, what will it cost the country to provide solutions to the crisis?

Estimating the financial cost to address climate change involves considering various factors such as the scope of required interventions, the sectors involved, and the timeframe for implementation. While exact figures can vary widely depending on the strategies adopted, the actual costs will depend heavily on specific strategies, the efficiency of their implementation, and the extent to which international partnerships can be leveraged to share the financial
burden.

Will private investors be ready to do business on climate change in Nigeria?

Yes, they would. There are a lot of climate opportunities here in Nigeria, especially in the renewable energy sector. This coupled with a vibrant youth population is enough grounds for investment in climate change in Nigeria. Only the government has to create enabling business environment for the prospective investors.

No investors will invest where they would not make returns on their investments. The policy must be friendly while they are not overtaxed or burdened with various unvafourable policies. And there is no doubt the Nigeria has the capable workforc.es that those investors can leverage if the environment is conducive for them to do their businesses.

What policies do you think the government need to put in place to attract investors?

To attract investors, the Nigerian government needs to establish a stable and supportive policy environment that mitigates investment risks and enhances the economic attractiveness of such initiatives. Transparency and access to information are vital in attracting investors. As I said, the tax policy must be friendly while they are not overburdened with different taxation policies.

How prepared is the country to tackle the challenge?

Quantifying our prepared ness is hard but we have laid a reasonable foundation and made progress but then there are substantial areas that require further development. Enhancing the country’s preparedness will involve strengthening institutional capacities, securing adequate funding, investing in technology and infrastructure, increasing public awareness, and fostering local and international collaborations. These are the areas where as a country we still need to work on to really prepare for this challenge.

How can individual organisations help in solving this crisis?

Yes, one of the non-governmental organisation, Climate Action Africa (CAA) is in the forefront of this. The Climate Action Africa Forum 2024 (CAAF24) is set to address some challenges concerning solutions to the climate change challenge in Nigeria. “The upcoming Climate Action Africa Forum (CAAF24), scheduled for June 19-20 in Lagos, serves as a testament to CAA’s commitment to fostering collaboration.

The forum will bring together key stakeholders from across Africa to discuss innovative solutions and develop concrete action plans for tackling climate change. The forum will introduce the Deal Room, a dynamic marketplace connecting Africa’s brightest innovators with forward-thinking investors to accelerate impactful deals for climate action and sustainable development.

Following the conference, CAA will partner with Silicon Valley based Founder Institute, the world’s largest startup accelerator to provide ongoing support to African innovators in a post accelerator programme. CAAF24 provides a valuable platform for knowledge sharing, collaborative problemsolving, and forging strategic partnerships. By working together, we can ensure that Nigeria, and Africa as a whole, emerges as a leader in building a sustainable and climate-resilient future.

Climate Action Africa, therefore, urges all stakeholders to take a proactive stance in addressing the climate crisis. Through collaborative efforts, innovation, and a shared commitment to a sustainable future, Nigeria can mitigate the impact of climate change and pave the way for a more prosperous and resilient tomorrow.

Read Previous

The Economics of Football: Understanding Club Finances and Transfers

Read Next

‘Binance Breached Nigerian Law, Operated Naira P2P For Crypto Assets’