The Minister of State for Environment, Kunle Salako, says the courageous decision by Bola Tinubu’s administration to remove fuel subsidy has reduced the country’s consumption rate by about 33 per cent.
Salako told our reporter on the sidelines of the 78th session of the UN General Assembly in New York that the action has reduced the emission generated by petrol.
“The singular action has reduced Nigeria’s consumption of petrol by 33 per cent, reduced the level of emission generated by Nigerians,” he said.
“The courageous decision to remove subsidy from petroleum is furthering climate action by Nigeria,” he added.
“I had highlighted this development in some of the meetings I attended or represented the President and at the meeting of Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change and at the meeting of Commonwealth Ministers of Environment and Climate,” he said.
“Nigeria participated in the meeting of Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change where I represented President to pass a resolution to adopt the Nairobi Declaration for final vetting by the meeting of AU.
“The first meeting of Commonwealth Ministers of Environment and Climate in which the Ministers decided to approach the 28th Conference of Parties in Dubai come late November to early December with common front of pushing for better financing for climate action.
“I represented Nigeria at the meeting, and I established that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu by taking the courageous decision to remove subsidy from petroleum is furthering climate action by Nigeria.
“It has also focused the attention of Nigeria at corporate and individual levels to renewable energy,” he said.
Earlier in his statement delivered to the “High Level Event for Nature and People: from Ambition to Action”, on behalf of the President, Salako said achieving the world’s ambitious conservation targets, like 30×30, would require that we all do more to prioritise nature finance.
30×30 is a global target to protect 30 per cent of the planet for nature by 2030.
“Last year, at COP15, the world agreed to fully close the nature finance gap and set a near term target of delivering at least $20 billion in international finance to the Global South by 2025.
“Last month in Addis, African countries came together and issued a declaration that underscored the importance of these nature finance targets.
“Nigeria would like to urge all countries to increase their efforts on this issue and to work with us to ensure that the world follow through on these crucial finance commitments.
“This is our vision for the future, and we invite everyone to act and envision solutions that will preserve nature for future generations,” he said.
According to him, as a responsible State Party to several Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs), including the Convention on Biological Diversity, Nigeria is doing its utmost to promote transformation actions.
The minister said that Nigeria was doing its best to promote transformations actions that are commensurate with the scale of the biodiversity crisis.
“We are exerting these efforts within our own country in addition to supporting countries in our Sub-region to increase their capacity in this regard,’’ he said.
In addition, Salako said that he attended Blue Leaders High Level Meeting, where in his statement, he said Nigeria was doing its best to promote transformation actions that were commensurate with the scale of the biodiversity crisis.
He told the leaders that Nigeria was exerting these efforts within the country in addition to supporting countries in our Sub-region to increase their capacity in this regard.
“This is an ambitious goal, a goal shared by the Blue Leaders and by ECOWAS countries, including Nigeria.
“The high sea is an essential part of the marine ecosystem which plays critical role in maintaining the health of our planet and people.
“Nigeria being the country with the longest coastline in West Africa understands the adverse effect of unregulated high sea and is therefore committed to the agenda of the ‘BBNJ’ Treaty.
“Prompt ratification of the newly adopted high seas treaty is an essential means to reach this goal. We must urgently ensure that the treaty is ratified and implemented,’’ he said.
He announced that through Nigeria’s rallying efforts, the 55 member States of the African Union have reached a consensus to support ratification of the earliest feasible date, the new international ocean treaty for the high seas, as enshrined in Addis Ababa Declaration.
The declaration was adopted at the 19th ordinary session of the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN-19, August 2023).
“Let us be bold for Oceans Conservation together and join African region to promptly ratify the new treaty,’’ he said.