By Tom Okpe
The House of Representatives Committee on Climate Change has said the ugly trend of climate change, isn’t just a distance threat, but a present reality that affects every aspect of lives.
The House Committee Chairman, Rep Chris Nkwonta, made this known inaugurating the Committee on Tuesday, at the National Assembly, Abuja.
He said: “Climate Change is a threat to our health, food security, water resources, biodiversity, security, and economic development.
“It’s also a threat that Knows no boundaries, ethnicity, religion, or political affiliation. It is a threat that requires urgent and collective action from all of us, as Nigerians, Africans, and, global citizens.”
Recall that the Committee on Climate Change was established by the Speaker, House of Representatives along other Committees for the 10th House, to check excesses of Government agencies and parastatals.
It’s also, established as a strategic legislative vehicle, saddled with the responsibility of overseeing the implementation of the Paris agreement to which Nigeria is signatory.
Nkwonta further stressed that the Committee is expected to oversight the National Council on Climate Change, (NCCC) and ensure the integration of Climate Change activities across all MDAs and organizational structures, which form part of the nation’s response to climate change adaptation and mitigation as provided for, in the Climate Change Act, 2021.
“The legal framework for the country to achieve its climate goals while attaining long-term socio-economic sustainability and resilience.
“As Legislators, there is need to enable solutions to the climate change challenges by legislating on matters, relating to climate change mitigation and adaptation to ensure that our laws and policies are aligned with global best practices.
“In the course of our assignment, the Committee is expected to engage with executive, the private sector, civil society, the media, academia, and the international community, to foster collaboration and partnership for effective climate change actions in Nigeria.
“The Committee will Oversight the NCCC as established by the Climate Change Act 2021, all MDA’s under the country’s Jurisdiction and work on the Annual Budget Estimates among other responsibilities, Pursuant to Standing Orders, 20 Rule 22 of the House of Representative, Tenth edition.
“My vision is to ensure that Nigeria meets her target to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2060 as part of Nigeria’s energy transition plan; to see that Nigeria fulfils her part in the agreement under the United Nations framework convention on climate change, (UNFCCC) and; to proffer a lasting solution to the challenges on implementation of the Nigeria’s obligations on climate change.”
He informed that the committee will work closely with the National Council on Climate Change on capacity building programs, international conferences, seminars on climate change within and outside the country.
“We will ensure that adequate provisions are made under the budget to allow the necessary agencies, carry out their statutory obligations and activities in line with the vision.
“Following my appointment as Chairman of the Committee, I have done a lot of research on Climate Change issues, met with the Director General of the NCCC and had meetings with NGO’s and Key stakeholders within our purview and I must say to you all, there is a lot of work to be done and we need to be aware of the challenges and opportunities ahead of us.
“To achieve our objectives, I want to urge your collaboration in your different capacities and as my colleagues in ensuring that we leave remarkable footprints.
“I look forward to your maximum cooperation, dedication, support and understanding to ensure we meet our goals and objectives, and ask that you accept the assurances of my highest commitment to the task ahead,” he added.