The National Council on Environment, a high profile platform of policy makers and implementation agencies on environmental issues in the federal, state and local governments of Nigeria has asked that the country ban export of charcoal and promote cleaner energy sources.
The council which met recently in Abeokuta, capital of Ogun State, stated that Nigeria’s forest cover was found to be less than four per cent as against earlier expectations that it was about 25 per cent, and as such should clampdown on charcoal production and sales.
“The current forest cover of Nigeria is less than four per cent as against the expected 25 per cent. Therefore, exportation of charcoal in Nigeria should be banned and alternative clean source of energy should be developed and promoted,” said the council in a resolution it reached at the meeting.
It further requested state governments across the country to prioritize investments in waste to power, adding that private finances were available to invest in such initiatives.
“There should be synergy between the federal and state governments in the implementation of climate change programmes especially on capacity building and access to global climate finance.
“State should be encouraged to put in place waste-to-wealth programmes/initiatives that can attract private sector participations and foreign direct investment in order to unlock investment opportunities in the waste management sub- sector,” they said in a communique containing their resolutions.
The council also called on the the federal Ministry of environment and states to establish reliable electronic based data bank on pollution control and waste management issues in the country, adding that actions that would lead to synergy between states and relevant federal ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) were necessary to advance issues of environmental challenges.