Stakeholders seek public-private partnership for solar energy development

Some stakeholders in the agriculture and environment sectors have called for public-private partnerships in efforts to develop solar energy so as to reduce greenhouse gases emissions.

They made the call in Abuja on Friday at the Dialogue Workshop on Low Carbon Growth for Nigeria – Policy Coherence in the interest of Nigeria’s Citizens.

Prof. Emmanuel Oladipo of the Department of Geography, University of Lagos, said that instead of investing in various kinds of renewable power, the government and private sector should focus on the development of solar energy.

He said that investment in various kinds of renewable power would not help the nation in its agenda to enhance low carbon growth to tackle gas emissions.

Oladipo said that Nigeria should be known as a country that successfully invested in and developed solar energy to drive low carbon growth.

According to him, huge investment in solar energy will stop industries from polluting the environment and assist the nation in its drive to tackle climate change.

Oladipo also called for an alignment between Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) agenda on climate change and the Federal Government’s economic recovery and growth plans so as to achieve the targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Sen. Shehu Sani (APC-Kaduna Central) said that the nation’s development plans and policies should be backed by law.

Sani, who was represented by his Special Assistant, Dr Godwin Ichimi, said that the legal backing became necessary because it would criminalise the ineptitude of persons who failed to implement those plans and policies.

Earlier, the Minister of State for Environment, Alhaji Ibrahim Jibril, said that Nigeria, as Africa’s largest economy, faced significant development challenges that were further exacerbated by climate change.

He said that the challenges, which included food insecurity, lack of access to energy and high unemployment, remained principal barriers to economic development.

The recent sharp decline in world oil prices has put pressure on the Federal Government budget, which continues to depend significantly on oil export revenues. Therefore, taking action on climate change is essential for Nigeria’s sustainable development. Making development more sustainable by changing development paths from carbon intensive to low carbon technologies can make a significant contribution to climate goals,’’ Jubril said.