News Analysis

Tackling Adverse Effects of Climate Change

Global warming is causing long-lasting changes to our climate system which threatens irreversible consequences.

According to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the world must cut its carbon dioxide emissions to net zero by 2050 in order to prevent global warming.

Also, the Nigeria Meteorological Agency, NIMET, in its 2019 seasonal rainfall prediction, said the annual variability and trend of rainfall over Nigeria in the last six decades depicts several inter-annual fluctuations that have been responsible for dry and wet years or extreme climate events such as droughts and floods in many parts of the country.

NIMET also predicted that as a result of these climatic conditions, incidences of malaria and other diseases will be higher in areas with temperatures ranging between 18-32c and with humidity above 60 percent.

More worrisome is the increasing knowledge that the country will be subject to consistent changes in rainfall and temperatures in future.

Hotter and drier conditions would likely exacerbate floods, droughts and heat waves and hamper agricultural production, particularly rain-fed agriculture, which many Nigerians rely on for their livelihoods with agriculture accounting for about twenty three percent of the country’s gross domestic product.

This critical situation is putting lives and livelihoods at risk, disrupting vital ecosystems for people and the planet with methods of production and consumption that are constantly attacking the environment globally.

As a result, the world is in a race to limit climate change and find workable, practical, and cost-efficient solutions to this emergency that is redefining global partnerships hence need for cooperatives for climate action. 

President of the International Cooperative Alliance, Ariel guarco noted that there is need to develop an economy with social inclusion and protection of natural resources.

Mr. Guarco noted that cooperatives worldwide will show leadership and share their cooperative values in combating this global issue. 

He advocated support for Sustainable Development Goal, SDG, 13 on climate action, which is one of the most severe challenges facing the planet during the 21st century.

Climate change severely impacts people’s livelihoods around the world, such as small-scale farmers, women, youth, indigenous peoples and ethnic minorities, who have to cope with extreme natural disasters and degradation of natural resources.

A report by United Nations Development Programme, UNDP, showed that nearly half of the world, seventy five nations representing 37 percent of emissions, is deeply committed to tackling the menace.

To tackle climate change, the country’s Nationally Determined Contributions, NDCs, was made under the Paris Agreement to reduce national emissions and to adapt to the effects of climate change.

 If fully implemented, these efforts will pave way for a low carbon economy and result in about 50 percent reduction in emissions, while economy will grow at an average annual rate of five percent by 2030.

Nigeria has ratified the 2015 Paris Agreement, this commendable considering it is one of the top six greenhouse gas emitters in Africa

Similarly, President Muhammadu Buhari in New York announced robust plans and initiatives by his administration to reverse the negative effects of climate change in Nigeria.

The plans were revealed in his address to the United Nations Climate Action Summit with the theme, “A race we can win, a race we must win.”

The president’s seven-point plans reiterate commitment to concrete actions towards the Paris Agreement goals.

To mitigate impact of climate change, the cooperative movement, a global actor of change should collaborate with its partners within the international community to significantly impact the climate agenda and achieve a fair, green and just transition for all communities, leaving no one behind.

Titilayo Kupoiliyi

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