Attendees at the Abuja second national conference on climate change
The Executive Director of Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa (CAPPA), Mr Akinbode Oluwafemi has expressed concern over the plight of no fewer than 62 million affected by the impact of climate change in the northern part of the country.
Speaking during the start of the second national conference on climate change, themed
‘’Creating an Agenda for Sustainable Climate Finance For Nigeria,’’ held in Abuja, he blamed desertification which has encroached on arable lands, affecting roughly 580,841 square kilometers out of 927,892 square kilometers for the situation.
He further identified climatic fluctuations, deforestation, extensive cultivation, overgrazing, marginal land use, bushfires, firewood harvesting, faulty irrigation systems, and urbanization as major contributing factors to the phenomenon.
He remarked that Nigeria’s climate finance is yet to be reflective of the country’s vulnerability in view of the fact that efforts in adaptation and mitigation are yet to be scaled up significantly to embrace the realities.
Said he: “Climate finance in Nigeria has relied exclusively on concessional debt which is about 46% and non-concessional debt at 25%. Grant and equity-based finance currently play a relatively minimal role in Nigeria’s climate finance ecosystem, at 5% and 12% respectively.
“Nigeria like every other country in sub-Saharan Africa is classed as a vulnerable country considering its exposure to climate risks.”
He warned that the effects of climate change are set to accelerate over the coming years unless progressive climate finance and a well-structured loss and damage funding mechanism are institutionalized and appropriately managed.
Stressing the need to create a new source of finance that will address climate risks and arrest emission upsurge in the country, he observed that developed countries have consistently fallen short of their climate commitments as funds that addresses infractions have become tools for power play, global relevance and selfish negotiations.
He added: “The impacts of climate change are visible to the least observing eyes in Nigeria and the drivers of this reality are not unknown.
“Frontlines continue to bear the consequences of actions they are not responsible for. Those responsible for the climate crises continue to avoid liabilities, delay response and water down agitations for commiserate compensation.
“No thanks to the oversight of
government policies. The loss and damage fund that should address historical liabilities is being technically silent or replaced with immediate liquidity at the expense of justice. Government rule books and policies are only catching up. Climate crises are miles ahead.
“Authorities including the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), United
Nations Framework Conventions on Climate Change(UNFCCC), and the Nigeria Climate Change Vulnerability Index are unanimous in their caution of the imminent climate change devastations even if immediate decarbonization is adopted.”