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COP28: Environment minister delivers national statement on Tinubu’s behalf

COP28: Environment minister delivers national statement on Tinubu’s behalf
December 09
14:00 2023

Balarabe Lawal, minister of environment, says Nigeria will continue to do its part in the global fight against climate change. 

Delivering the national statement on behalf of President Bola Tinubu on Saturday, Lawal said Nigeria, a country of over 200 million people, contends with both development and climate change.

He said treating one challenge and not the other will cause both to fail, adding that Nigeria needs large-scale investments in this, using gas as a transition fuel as well as in renewable energy.

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“As the leader of over two hundred million diverse people spread across an equally diverse geography, I know my country must contend with both development and climate change,” he said.

“To treat one but not the other, will cause us to fail at both. Thus, despite the challenges, my country will continue to do its part in fighting this collective menace.

“Pursuant to our ‘decade of gas’ policy, we now seek to shift from oil, coal and wood to using cleaner gas. We seek large-scale investment in this area as well as in renewable energy.”

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He added that investments in Nigeria will enable the country to expand on the green wall, enhance water and flood management efforts and improve agricultural productivity and food security.

Speaking on how NNPC Limited became the first national oil company in Africa to endorse the Global Oil & Gas Decarbonization Accelerator (OGDA), Tinubu said Nigeria stands ready to contribute to the effort to decarbonise the global economy.

“Our vast renewable energy resources present an opportunity for sustainable growth. We call for strong and decisive collaboration in unlocking these resources for the benefit of our people and the world at large,” he said.

‘WE NEED FAIRNESS’

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The president continued by saying that it would be “unfair” to ask Nigerians as well as other developing countries to only “travel by road alone”, saying that “any durable solution must be based on cooperative fairness”.

He said “developing economies cannot be pressured into bearing a disproportionate share of the burden,” thus the framework of a sustainable climate change solution cannot mirror the “extant imbalances” of the current global economic order.

He said the wealthy and powerful cannot continue to do as they will while the poor countries endure because “those who benefit most from the current system have the onus to invest the most in repairing the environmental breaches we now suffer”.

He encouraged developing countries to honour their commitments of providing the needed technology and finance, while developing countries commit to moving to cleaner energy.

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He asked for commitments that have been publicly announced to be honoured such as making the loss and damage fund operable and ensuring a measurable global goal on adaptation.

He called on world leaders to right old wrongs by instilling equity and fairness into the global economy because that way “we might not just save this planet, we just might make it a better home for all who dwell on it”.

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Tinubu was supposed to deliver the national statement on December 2. However, despite being present at the conference centre in Expo City, Dubai, the president could not deliver the statement when other world leaders were delivering theirs.

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