National Climate change Policy



Scientific evidences are conclusive that the earth is warming and climates are changing with serious and potentially damaging consequences. Climate change is aggravating the environmental issues such as deforestation and land degradation, freshwater shortage, food security and air and water pollution. Projected increases in extreme climatic events as well as more changes in the weather patterns may further threaten the means of livelihoods in the face of inaction.
In Nigeria, the agriculture and food security, water resources, public health, and settlements sectors are particularly vulnerable to climate change. Most vulnerable regions are coastal regions and erosion and desertification-prone areas in the southeastern and northern parts of the country respectively. While everyone is vulnerable, the most vulnerable groups are farmers, fisherfolks, the elderly, women, children and poor people living in urban areas.
Responding to climate change falls into two broad classes of action, mitigation and adaptation. Mitigation refers to measures that may either reduce the increase in greenhouse emissions (abatement) or increase terrestrial storage of carbon (sequestration). Adaptation refers to all the responses that may be used to reduce vulnerability.1
Nigeria has taken the challenge of climate change seriously. The First National Communication was produced in November, 2003. A stakeholders’ initiation workshop on the Second National Communication (SNC) took place in December 2009, and is being finalized and a National Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan (NASPA) has been concluded. Nigeria now has a Climate Change Department (CCD) in the Federal Ministry of Environment in Abuja, Nigeria. The CCD is created to implement the Climate Convention and protocol activities. It also coordinates the activities of the Inter-ministerial Committee on Climate Change.
Nigeria already has several policies and strategic initiatives which if properly implemented, can serve as adaptive as well as mitigative climate change measures. Many of the initiatives in these policies (e.g. oases rehabilitation in the National Action to Combat Desertification and the National Policy on Drought and Desertification) can be taken as anticipatory adaptation measures and plans, which can be fine-tuned into policy options for climate change response in the country. This comprehensive policy and response strategy will enable these policies to translate into meaningful inter-sectoral activities for sustainable environmental management.



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