Nigeria’s New Government Has Yet to Prioritize Climate Change

Climate Progress in the First Half of 2023

Rating D

The first half of 2023 in Nigeria was focused on the general and presidential elections, with little attention given to climate change issues. This is despite Nigeria experiencing extreme weather events, such as the worst flooding in a decade in October 2022, displacing over 1.4 million people. Moreover, the president-elect, Bola Tinubu, has also been alleged to insinuate that climate change issues in Nigeria are the headache of the West. This was derived from his comment at an interactive session organised for presidential candidates by the Arewa Consultative Forum in Nigeria.

“We are a poor nation. They banned coal. They say firewood is not to be fetched. They say we need to plant more trees and they are not giving us money. We need to open our eyes. We need to tell the West, if you don’t guarantee our finances and work with us to stop this we are not going to comply with your climate change. They will do it.”

This suggests that climate change may not be on the table without financial support from the West.

Nigeria passed the Climate Change Act in November 2021, which seeks to achieve low greenhouse gas emissions and green and sustainable growth and provides a framework to set a target to reach net zero between 2050 and 2070. The Act includes provisions to adopt National Climate Change Action Plans in five-year cycles. It remains to be seen whether these plans will materialize and whether the new government will prioritize climate change issues in its policies and programs.


This Post was submitted by Climate Scorecard Nigeria Country Manager Juwonlo Michael.

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