Nigeria Policy Recommendations

Spotlight Activity: Nigeria Policy Recommendations

Nigeria’s NDC seeks to provide an integrated and comprehensive strategic approach towards promoting a low carbon, high growth, climate-resilient path for national sustainable development.

In its 2015 NDC, Nigeria pledged to unconditionally reduce GHG emissions by 20% by 2030, compared to business as usual (BAU) emission levels. It aimed to achieve this goal by improving energy efficiency by 20%, providing 13 GW of renewable electricity to rural communities that are currently not connected to the electric power grid, and by ending the flaring of gas.

Nigeria’s efforts to achieve its NDC pledge are in danger of being overshadowed by new national policies and action plans that are far from eco-friendly in their overall packaging and implementation. The projects are the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (Medium Term Plan 2017-2020); the Presidential Initiative on Fertilizer; Nigeria’s Coal Power Project; and the Anchor Borrowers initiative. 

These conflicting new policies come from a party which is diametrically opposed to the proper implementation of the NDCs strategies. The policies of the new administration also leave Nigeria’s ability so strengthen its commitment to its Paris Agreement pledge by 2020 in question. Not only that, but the country may not be able to implement policies that would reduce the country 1.5 degrees by 2030, as is recommended for all countries in the latest IPCC report. 

As part of the country’s commitment, the bill for an act to prohibit gas flaring (prohibition and punishment) in Nigeria which passed its second reading in 2017 was passed into law by the Senate on April 17, 2019. Irrespective of the flaring routine or non-routine flaring. This is a commendable step towards ending gas flaring by 2030.

Policy Recommendations

Climate Scorecard recommends that Nigeria adopt the following policies and incorporate them in updating its emissions reduction pledge to the Paris Agreement:

  • Work towards ending gas flaring by 2030
  • Work towards off-grid solar PV of 13GW(13,000MW)
  • Efficient gas generator 2% per year energy efficiency (30% by 2030)
  • Transport shift car to bus
  • Improve electricity grid
  • Climate smart agriculture and reforestation Trajectory

We additionally recommend that the government strengthen policies related to agriculture and renewable energy as follows.

  1. Support Climate Smart Agriculture

Agricultural emissions are contributed by methane (CH4) released from the guts of ruminants (cattle, sheep and goats), nitrous oxide gases from fertilizer use, and carbon dioxide from fuel use in heavy agricultural machinery. Although methane and nitrous oxide (N2O) are emitted in smaller quantities than carbon dioxide (CO2) than fossil fuel use, they have climate impacting potential that is 25 and 300 times greater, respectively. Additional estimates of greenhouse gas emissions precursors NOx, CO, NMVOCs, and SO2 reveal that Nigeria has 75 percent of its population releasing dangerous gases through the agricultural industry.

Moreover, the initiative that provides fertilizers, herbicides to farmers at low interest rate should have recourse to the country’s NDCs. Considering long term value; fertilizers emit GHGs and are not effective thus the government should have better soil management strategies (crop rotation, mixed cropping and cover cropping) safer environment and organic farming structure including farmers with temporal inputs. Formal and informal institutional arrangements rural people engage in for the effective conservation of forests; including innovative community concession arrangements where the local communities are totally included in the project and bans placed on the use of forest resources by the Government agencies.

We advocate for the encouragement of a wide range of partnerships between the aforementioned parties and local forest management. They also should form focused groups linkages between farmers and the universities and agro-research institutes, to achieve a local content adoption implementation of NDCs.

  1. Strengthen Investment in Renewable Energy

Renewable energy based off-grid electrification is a more climate friendly. The National Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Policy (NREEEP) of 2015 provides an overarching framework for renewable energy and energy efficiency, thereby functioning as an umbrella policy for the various existing documents and serving as a reference document (anchor) for concrete implementation measures.

These policy objectives and implementation strategies have been carefully defined with the fundamental guiding premises that energy is crucial to national development goals and that government has a prime role in meeting the energy challenges facing the nation. Furthermore, the dependence on oil can be reduced through the diversification of the nation’s energy resources, aggressive research, development and demonstration (R D& D), human resources development, etc. Consequently the overall energy policy objectives may be summarized as follows: i. To ensure the development of the nation’s energy resources, with diversified energy resources option, for the achievement of national energy security and an efficient energy delivery system with an optimal energy resource mix

To curb challenges of vandalization, poor maintenance, and overloading experiences, we need to educate end-users, vendors, and agencies throughout Nigeria. It is vital to raise awareness about the importance of implementation, monitoring, and validation teams set up by the government.  Then the Federal Ministry of Power can repeat it 2014 launched the initiative; Operation Light-up Rural Nigeria, which is aimed at utilizing renewable energy for electrifying rural communities in all 36 States in the country this way renewable energy take bit by bit (from small scale) gradual implementation to large scale. 

Relevant government bodies should also be well equipped to enforce stringent environmental impact assessment standards right from project conception, to minimize the environmental impact of energy projects. Appropriate monitoring, reporting and verifying systems to help assess improvement in performance, increase employment and welfare, This is to focus on reducing emissions not displacing it.

Activity Rating: *** Right Direction

Nigeria knows what it has to do to strengthen its efforts to reduce emissions and make the country 1.5 degrees Celsius compliant by 2030. It now needs to political will to do it.

Take Action

Please send the following message to the Policymaker below:

Dear sir,

We applaud the government for the steps taken to end gas flaring. We recommend an urgent synergistic approach and action by reconsidering the existing policies that are not recourse to the country’s NDCs if Nigeria is to meet her 2030 Paris Agreement pledge.

Thank you.

Send Action Alert Message to:

Send Message to: Dr. Yerimah Peter Tarfa

The Director,

Department of Climate Change;

Ministry of Environment,





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