A continental and international rally may have begun in support of Nigeria’s advocacy to stop funding plans for gas projects, just as the global community moves towards the 2050 net zero emissions target under the program. United Nations Conference on Climate Change.

Nigeria has been at the forefront of international advocacy questioning the planned financing of gas projects as one of the steps towards achieving net zero emissions. From now on, the African Development Bank at the continent level, ADB, set his sights on the clamor during a meeting last week between Nigerian Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and a delegation from the bank. A team of American experts also did this recently in a widely published article.

African Development Bank Vice President for Electricity, Energy, Climate and Green Growth Kevin Kariuki led a delegation to visit the Vice President on October 21 and expressed the commitment and support from the bank for a just energy transition.

His words: “The first thing I would like to mention is that you have inspired us a lot in the recent past, by your strong and very well articulated position on the gas issue with regard to Nigeria and Africa.

“You made it clear that gas should be seen as a transitional fuel for Africa, a position that our bank also supports because we understand that Africa needs to increase its access to energy, and you cannot increase access to energy without using some of the resources and energy sources available to us. I think that this position you took was also supported and affirmed by the President of the Bank (Mr. Akinwunmi Adesina) during the ministerial retreat.

Osinbajo has recently advocated for a just transition to global net zero emissions, calling in particular on multilateral agencies and Western countries to halt planned funding for gas projects in developing countries.

At various national and international forums, including recent meetings with a delegation from the European Union (EU), at the African Commonwealth Regional Heads of Government Roundtable, and also at various meetings in London during the A high-level United Nations event on the energy transition plan in Africa, among others, Mr. Osinbajo strongly opposed stopping investments in gas projects in developing countries during the transition period.

Speaking at the meeting, Mr Osinbajo said: “We are looking at business options and the climate finance facility is one that we are trying to pay attention to.”

Regarding Nigeria’s energy transition plan, the vice president revealed that one of the elements of the plan included “the use of renewable energies and the integration of these into the general flow of things that we do. We have a #SolarPowerNaija project, where we hope to connect 5 million homes to solar energy, which is part of our economic sustainability plan.

The Vice President praised AfDB’s support and said that “we are looking forward to doing much more in the power sector and hope that we would be able to get your support (AfDB) in the future. We know there are quite a few things the bank has invested resources in.

“Thank you very much for the great support we receive from the AfDB and also for your willingness and availability at all times. “

Earlier in his speech, Mr. Kariuki mentioned that at COP26, the AfDB would “make a strong plea to developed countries to keep their pledge of $ 100 billion per year” which should have started in 2020, ” because the importance is that today, even if we wanted to tackle the climate challenge, we really cannot do it because the issue of climate finance has to be tackled in an important way. “

In another development, a number of senior US-based clean energy policy researchers argued that “the brutal exclusion of all non-renewable energy projects from development finance is an unfair climate strategy and ineffective which highlights more than a billion Africans ”.

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In a recent article titled “Why Banning Fossil Fuel Project Funding in Africa Is Not a Climate Solution,” academics Benjamin Attia and Morgan Brazilian of the US Payne Institute noted that “when it comes to ‘carbon dioxide emissions, sub-Saharan Africa is collectively responsible for barely half a percent of all global emissions over time, while the US, UK, EU, Japan and Russia are responsible for more than 100 times that amount, or about 57%.

The experts referred to Mr. Osinbajo’s plea on the issue. “Nigerian Vice President Yemi Osinbajo recently described ‘energy transition’ as ‘a curious term’ when applied universally, given the energy shortages in countries like Nigeria. He pleaded for an energy transition in which Africa can develop rapidly and grow.

They noted that indeed “the increase in electricity in the industrialized regions of sub-Saharan Africa would initially supply income-generating activities and public services, both engines of economic growth”.

US experts concluded that “fair and effective climate negotiations will require nuanced policy considerations that balance the priorities of energy poverty reduction with urgent climate change mitigation and adaptation. A just energy transition would let African governments develop and implement policies and meet their own national climate commitments under the Paris Agreement rather than endorsing those of the West.

Laolu Akande
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Advertising
Office of the Vice-President

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