As the forthcoming COP27 summit draws closer (expectations are really high from all stakeholders), the anticipated energy crisis in the European bloc, in the coming winter seasonal cold, would rely on sourcing natural gas for heating. This move indicates that gas usage still subsists as a hopeful window for an immediate escape from the imminent cold weather impact. Surprisingly enough, Austria went to court to challenge the European bloc not to include natural gas and nuclear energy as sustainable energy sources. For the African continent, especially now that the 2022 Conference of Parties (COP27) will take place within the continent at Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, this particular summit (the United Nations Climate Change Conference) should be leveraged by all African nations to prioritise development and growth aspirations. Since the continent is not the primary polluter of the global stratosphere with carbon emissions that are heating up the entire global environment, the African leaders are of the opinion that the heavy polluters that abuse nature ought to shoulder a very significant responsibility for climate change mitigation. This is evidenced in the observed impact currently devastating the planet earth with all kinds of natural disasters (drought, flooding, melting of the glacier in the North Pole’s Arctic region, imminent losses of the “endangered species” in the animal kingdom of both aquatic and terrestrial habitats). Africans, therefore, should not be held responsible for extra commitment that could pose a stumbling block on the continent’s rate of renewable energy development.
This writer had earlier written that, “Governance protects the economic viability of the state, and strives to achieve a sustainable growth and development, where the leadership efficiently provides social benefits for the governed in a social contract at specific periods, through corporate social responsibility as democracy dividends”. To now talk about hydrocarbons’ greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, bearing in mind that natural gas is fossil fuel by source; hydrocarbon compound used for cooking, (Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG), domestic heating and industrial power generation, (the Compressed Natural Gas, CNG); it is not renewable but it is a very clean energy substrate; and therefore still significantly relevant in the global energy equation on any energy mix value chain. Just like it is envisioned that petrol driven cars and machinery in Nigeria (and possibly, some other African countries) will still be in full usage within the economy (considered as a dumping ground for such used vehicles from the Western world), far beyond 2060; which shall gradually terminate over time, and become obsolete thereafter. This writer also said in the past that, “the global energy-mix shall, of course, still be relevant for Nigeria’s economic exploits because the economy might deemphasize its extractive upstream exports, and focus real hard on the downstream local refining operations. It shall remain attractive and relevant (as the economy’s cash-cow) for the next four to five decades (based on the facts of its abundant reserves, and continued utilisation by the fossil fuel powered engines).”
The coming conference, however, is another opportunity for Nigeria (as well as other nations within the African continent) to further intensify her mitigation and adaptation measures against GHG emissions, towards her committed net-zero carbon emissions target by 2060 (as already promised at the Glasgow 2021 COP26 energy summit). That led to signing into law the Climate Change Act, later in November that year, which committed the federal government to measurable action plans on climate change mitigation and adaptation, as evidenced for all to see with the desertification in the northern part of the country, the drought and soil erosion in the central region, and the pollution in the coastal region. Subsequently, the pioneer DG and CEO of the National Council on Climate Change was appointed shortly after. In like manner and in quick succession, the nation strategically launched the Nigerian Energy Transition Plan on 24th of August 2022; as a clear proof in showing commitment towards actualizing net zero carbon emissions from the nation’s energy consumption, as already declared in 2021 at Scotland.
The global energy solutions on green actions, no doubt in this twenty first century, when looked at from the conscientious efforts made by member nations to support the various resolutions reached in their respective and several multilateral agreements and policies signed in the past.
Those decisions taken during global energy summits and other UN conventions and international conferences, towards climate change mitigation, adaptation and the conservation of the earth for man’s sustainable habitation, shall, hopefully, be achieved as being pursued, and according to its mapped out plan. One area of concern is the risk of policy summersault by the wealthy nations who have been identified as the heavy polluters and major defaulters. They need not renege (no matter the circumstances of the energy crisis) on their avowed pledges on a steady and progressive fight against this environmental global scourge called global warming. This caution ought to be threaded by all concerned, so that the planet earth could be peaceably and peacefully bequeathed to the future generations of humans for their own sustainable usage and existence (as a naturally prepared and programmed place of abode for mankind).
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