Action against climate change effects on population increasingly urgent- Stakeholders
The effective management of climate change issues to reduce its attendant vulnerabilities and foster resilience as it affects Nigerias population has again been emphasized. Highlighting the impending consequences of climate change in the country, the Executive Chairman, National Population Commission, Nasir Isa Kwarra said the growing evidence of links between climate change, migration, food insecurity and conflict raises many reasons for concern. At a stakeholders meeting on the interrelationship between population, climate change and sustainable development organized by the Africa Health Budget Network, Kwarra said if the issues are not addressed, the rights of women, children, migrants, and persons with disabilities, as well as the countrys biodiversity, will be gravely affected. He warned that the sudden gradual disappearance of Lake Chad and its conflict resultant effect calls for urgent concern, saying the far-reaching impacts of climate change will ultimately affect the most vulnerable demography of Nigeria. The NPC boss said the fear of global warming is steadily rising and is often expressed in the form of migration, and economic and political instability yet the links between population dynamics and climate change is still being ignored. Regrettably, the intergovernmental panel on climate change incorporates global population size and growth into its emission data projections without analyzing the impact on demographic groups. In a presentation on the Global Perspectives on Population and Climate Change, Dr Aminu Magashi, the Coordinator of the African Health Budget Network said Nigeria is still lagging behind in meeting the United Nations target for reducing the effects of climate change, especially its attendant health implications. Magashi called for more political will and commitment as well as allocation of more funding in the budget for the National Population Commission and the Ministry of Environment to tackle the issues of climate change and population management. If we are trying to manage our population by 2030, we need to commit more resources to galvanize action, to involve everybody in Nigeria through a multisectoral approach, stakeholders mechanisms and platforms. Magashi also warned of the continuous increase in temperatures as a result of global warming and the use of fossil fuels especially among the poor, saying it has adverse effects on all demographies, especially in urban centres where there is population congestion. The congested environment resulting from overpopulation can also aggravate climate change itself, which, inadvertently, increases temperatures, this is why the issue of population control is important. Calling for the reduction in the use of fossil fuel, Magashi said its use increases temperatures, heightens the risk of flooding, increases the sea levels and can lead to catastrophic health and environmental consequences for the country.