AS NIGERIA joins the rest of the world to commemorate the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, the Minister of Environment, Dr Mohammed Mahmood Abubakar revealed that Nigeria has met its compliance obligations under the hydrochlorofuorocarbons phase-out management plan of the Montreal Protocol.
According to a press release signed by Saghir el Mohammed, Director Press, during the extended ministerial press briefing for the commemoration of the year 2020 International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer, the minister stated that: “We have met the compliance obligations under the protocol by achieving the 10% reduction of our hydrochlorofuorocarbons importation from the baseline in 2015. We are now on track to achieve further reduction of 35% consumption by the end of this year”
The minister stated that Nigeria signed the Montreal Protocol in 1988 and subsequently ratified all its related amendments and have been implementing the protocol’s Ozone Depleting Substances phase-out programme in Nigeria assisting over 600 large, small and medium scale enterprises in the foam, refrigeration and air conditioning, aerosols, fire protection and solvent sectors to convert to ozone friendly substances and technologies.
Speaking further, Dr Abubakar re-affirmed the commitment of his ministry to cooperate and give necessary support towards the implementation of Multilateral Environmental Agreements that Nigeria is a party to.
“To demonstrate this, under my leadership, the upgrade of a one of two of such in Africa System House at Vitapour Nig. Ltd (a subsidiary of Vitafoam Nig. Ltd), for the formulation of ozone-friendly systems in the manufacture of rigid polyurethane foam, was completed in 2019 and is ready for commissioning,” he stated.
He stressed that studies have shown that replacing climate potent gases creates an opportunity to increase the energy efficiency of cooling equipment by 10-50 per cent thereby significantly reducing energy cost to consumers and businesses.
Addressing the issue of climate action, the minister enjoined Nigerians to be steadfast in their efforts to limit climate change impact even as the world grapple with the challenge of COVID-19. According to him, “as we deal with the impacts of the global pandemic, it is pertinent to be conscious of climate action as it could cause even more misery and disruption than COVID-19: we must therefore be resolute in our efforts to limit it.”
He added that despite global challenge occasioned by the outbreak of COVID-19 and its impact on the nation’s health and economy, the Federal Ministry of Environment remain resolute in its resolve to phase out ozone depleting substances and activities, recognising the importance of the refrigeration and air-conditioning servicing sector in guaranteeing food security and availability of medicines through effective and efficient preservation as well as providing thermal comfort in hospitals and homes.
The Ministry of Environment undertook a study on COVID-19 implications on the refrigeration and servicing Sector in Nigeria, with the specific objective of identifying best practices when servicing refrigeration and air-conditioning equipment amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, describe the key hygiene methods to avoid infection and create trusting and safe environment for all personnel involved in the servicing as well as describe how the sector can contribute to providing a clean and virus free environment.
Delivering a goodwill message from the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, Environment Expert, Oluyomi Banjo congratulated Nigeria for achieving 10% reduction of ozone-depleting substance describing the nation has been proactive and exemplary.
In his welcome remarks, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Environment, Abel Olumyiwa Enitan stated that the ministry will continue to utilise the opportunity provided by the Montreal Protocol and its amendments to promote the adoption of Ozone and climate-friendly technologies that will ultimately contribute to the socio-economic development of our dear nation.
“I urge you all to support the ministry in achieving these lofty goals.” He said