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Climate Watch: Nigeria commits to reduce plastic pollution of ocean bodies 

Climate Watch: Nigeria commits to reduce plastic pollution of ocean bodies 
July 04
13:23 2022

Despite directly impacting our communities, health and livelihood, climate-related reports usually take a back seat to dominant news beats like politics and business. Climate Watch aims to ensure you never miss important stories on climate change and actions being taken towards limiting its impact.

Here is a round-up of last week’s climate stories:

  • At the UN ocean conference in Lisbon, which came to a close on July 1, Nigeria committed to reduce its marine plastic pollution. Sharon Ikeazor, minister of state for environment, who delivered President Muhammadu Buhari’s speech at the conference said Nigeria had mainstreamed ocean management into its economy and also constituted a presidential committee on sustainable blue economy. She also announced that Nigeria had embarked on the creation of two marine protected areas and is committed to participating in multilateral negotiations and collaboration on conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity. 


  • In addition to Nigeria’s commitment, over 150 countries have also committed to engage and scale up science-based and innovative actions to address the ocean emergency at the just concluded Ocean conference.  More than 6,000 participants, including heads of states and governments advocated for urgent and concrete actions to tackle the ocean crisis. The conference showcased initiatives of how stakeholders could work together to transition towards a sustainable ocean economy and, as a result, improve biodiversity, community livelihoods and climate resilience. Close to 700 commitments were made on the need for innovation and science to revitalise the ocean.


  • Sean Melbourne, head of climate change and energy in West Africa, said technology is needed if the world must effectively tackle climate change. He said climate technologies that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions include renewable energies such as wind, solar and hydropower. Speaking at a climate change forum last week, Melbourne said the urgent need for climate technology development and transfer was explicitly recognised in the Paris Agreement, as well as during COP26 in Glasgow. He said it is important that the benefits of science and innovations are made to reach and enable even the most vulnerable in the society. He added that cultural, social and political transformation is also essential to enable widespread deployment of both behavioural and technological responses to climate change.


  • Despite being removed as executive director of  Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria  (ERA/FoEN) and the secretary of its board of trustees, Godwin Ojo insisted his removal was illegal and had instituted a case in court against the organisation. However, owing to his “ lack of seriousness”, the federal high court in Lagos struck out the case last week.  The board has also prohibited Ojo from parading himself in any manner as representative of the organisation or in any capacity as ERA/FoEN executive director because he has been replaced by Chima Williams, the current executive director. Find more details here. 


  • As its own way of supporting and accelerating the global ocean protection movement, the United Kingdom (UK) has pledged to invest £150 million in a new global programme tagged ‘COAST’. This is to help developing countries protect marine habitat, improve the sustainability and productivity of small-scale fisheries, and unlock aquaculture’s potential. The UK government which made the announcement at the just concluded Ocean Conference said the fund will be used to  support developing countries and vulnerable coastal communities around the world adapt to climate change and build “sustainable, prosperous coastal economies.” Read more here




This story is published in partnership with Report for the World, a global service program that supports local public interest journalism.


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