Council Advocates Review of National Policy On Environment
The National Council on Environment (NCE) has demanded that the National Policy on Environment be reviewed and incorporated into emerging environmental issues, including the development of a framework on circular economy.
This was contained in a communiqué issued at the end of the 15th Meeting of the NCE themed “Appraisal of the emerging environmental challenges and the opportunities in the environment sector: A call for action towards the environment of our dream”, chaired by the Minister of State for Environment, Barr. Sharon Ikeazor, in Abuja.
It noted the abysmally low funding of the environment sector and called for increased funding of the sector and provision of a public-private partnership in view of the increasing emerging environmental challenges and threat to human life and development, saying this is also necessary to ensure completion of the ministry’s on-going projects in different states. These projects are experiencing implementation delays due to poor funding.
The communiqué also noted the emerging challenges of waste/plastic pollution and the quantum opportunities in their management, using the principles/approach of circular economy and urged for the adoption of the principle and development of a national programme, framework and strategy for its implementation in Nigeria.
“The council noted the dangers posed by the indiscriminate spreading of open dumpsites across the country and urged all state governments to close such sites and upgrade those that can be upgraded or establish sanitary-engineered landfill by 2030. States are also urged to adopt approaches in line with the principle of circular economy, green growth and natural capital accounting.
“The council noted the increase in the number of financial memoranda being submitted to the council and urged members to send only policy memos to the council for consideration.
“The council commends the Federal Ministry of Environment for the development and launching of the national policies on Solid Waste Management and Plastic Waste Management and urged the three tiers of government to give full commitment to its implementation,” the communiqué said in part.
Some of the issues the communique raised included the need to address the issue of contaminated mining sites across the country to drastically reduce the adverse impact on the environment and human lives. Thus, it directed the Federal Ministry of Environment to collaborate with the Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development to commence verification of active and abandoned mining sites and their environment for possible contamination of heavy metals and remediation where appropriate.
It urged states to align with national commitments and develop green projects, in partnership with development partners, to meet obligations to the Paris Agreement. It added that, as a party to the UNFCCC, Nigeria has updated her Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) with additional sectors for implementation towards meeting global greenhouse gas emissions (GHGEs).