Nigeria’s President Bola Tinubu on Tuesday said African nations are devoted to tackling the devastating impact of climate change across the continent.
He added, however, that the various countries across the continent will be doing so on their terms.
The President disclosed this while addressing world leaders Tuesday at the ongoing 78th session of the high-level General Debate of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) at the UN headquarters in New York.
“African nations will fight climate change but must do so on our own terms,” Mr Tinubu said.
To achieve the needed popular consensus, he said the Climate change campaign must be planned within overall economic efforts.
Mr Tinubu explained to the world leaders that climate change severely impacts Nigeria and Africa.
He said Northern Nigeria is hounded by desert encroachment on once arable land and that the southern part of the country is affected by the rising tide of coastal flooding and erosion.
In the middle belt, the president said the rainy season brings floods that kill and displace multitudes.
“As I lament deaths at home, I also lament the grave loss of life in Morocco and Libya. The Nigerian people are with you,”
At least 2,900 people are known to have died in the 6.8-magnitude earthquake that struck Morocco’s High Atlas mountains recently.
Less than four days later, floods resulting from horrific rainfall swept through the eastern city of Derna causing thousands of fatalities, while tens of thousands of people are missing and 40,000 people displaced.
The World Weather Attribution initiative, a team of scientists that analyse the role of climate change in the aftermath of extreme weather events, has attributed the disaster to climate change and other human factors.
The scientists said they found planet-warming pollution made the deadly rainfall in Libya up to 50 times more likely to occur and 50 per cent worse.
Climate action in Nigeria
In Nigeria, Mr Tinubu told the world leaders that the government will build political consensus by highlighting remedial actions which also promote economic good.
“Projects such as a Green Wall to stop desert encroachment, halting the destruction of our forests by mass production and distribution of gas burning stoves, and providing employment in local water management and irrigation projects are examples of efforts that equally advance both economic and climate change objectives,” the president said.
He said continental efforts regarding climate change would register important victories if established economies were more forthcoming with public and private sector investment for Africa’s preferred initiatives.
Meanwhile, at the just-concluded Africa Climate Summit in Nairobi, Kenya, the president in his address delivered by Nigeria’s Minister of State for Environment and Ecological Management, Iziak Salako, said that Nigeria would require 17.7 billion dollars annually to fulfil its unconditional Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) pledges by 2030.
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