Former President Dr Goodluck Jonathan has urged world leaders to show more commitment to climate financing as the world seeks to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and arrest the damaging effect of climate change.
He urged leaders of developed economies to offer sustained technical and financial support to aid mitigation and adaptation efforts in developing countries as a means of saving the earth from rising temperatures due to global warming.
The former President stated this on Thursday at the 30th National Conference and Annual General Meeting of the Nigerian Environmental Society (NES), held in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
Although Dr Jonathan commended World Leaders for some of the decisions reached the just-ended Conference Of The Parties (COP26) on climate change in Glasgow, Scotland, he urged leaders of developed countries to endeavour to meet their commitments in funding climate change control efforts.
He said: “We are all aware that the highly favoured clean and renewable energy is an expensive option, especially at inception and requires huge resources and technology.
“It will only be meaningful and beneficial to developing nations if world leaders show more commitment in walking the talk in climate financing.
“This view was echoed by many leaders of developing nations at the COP26 Summit, particularly our President who presented a case for sustained technical and financial support to developing countries to enhance the attainment of national and global climate change goals.
“For me, this is the way to go and is most desirable for our common good. The fight against climate change is therefore a cause that requires a concerted global approach.
“The experience with Covid19 pandemic has shown that the world needs to always come up with global plans and strategies to address global problems so that nations can key into these plans to resolve issues affecting the whole of humanity.
The former President also noted that the “global effect of climate change including flooding, droughts, accelerated desert encroachment, and erosion which is increasing in intensity and frequency, is felt more here in Africa, even though the continent contributes less than 4 per cent of greenhouse gases.”
According to him: “The implementation of the 2015 Paris Agreement which aims to substantially reduce greenhouse emissions and strengthen the ability of parties to adapt to climate change has not been impressive, especially as the instrument lacks a binding edge.
“There is also the perception of lack of will on the part of developed and wealthier countries, who are indeed the heavy emitters, to continue to robustly fund mitigation and adaptation efforts in developing countries, like ours.
“This fear is sustained by the fact that the pledge made 12 years ago in Copenhagen by developed nations, to contribute $100 billion annually towards mitigation and adaptation has never fully materialised.”
He also challenged the global business community to look beyond the quest for profit and do more to save Planet Earth.
“There is a lot that big businesses and multinational companies in Nigeria and elsewhere can do to check pollution and land degradation going on in the Niger Delta and in many other parts of the country where there are mining sites. We should all join hands to reverse the earth’s present dangerous trajectory.”
“The former President further said: “As an advocate of democracy and good governance in Africa, I understand that adverse weather conditions, affecting the lives and livelihood of people, could trigger heightened social tensions in our societies, thereby putting democracy and constitutionality in danger. So, the peace of any society is inextricably linked with the stability of the environment.”
He noted further that as President, his “administration’s considerable support for the Great Green Wall initiative is a testament of my passion for environmental and climate issues.”