This happens to be my final post for my Climate Change Theme this month. You can find the first two articles here and here. I am still in pursuit of an LPG user, as I am very much determined to share whatever I learn here. While I was nosing around, I discovered that the Federal Government has an interesting project called Operation Light Up Rural Nigeria.
The project is aimed at using renewable energy to get electricity across to rural communities in all the 36 states of the federation, especially communities not connected to the national grid. It is an ambitious project. It is divided into three stages. The first stage would utilise 100% solar energy. While the other two stages would incorporate wind energy and biomass respectively. This doesn’t excite me. Maybe, this project will go the way of the other uncompleted ones. The other reason is the fact that it is coming late. The Jigawa State model is commendable. The problem is what happens if the present Governor leaves office? Nigeria is a place where government’s policy is as permanent as the elected’s tenure. The implementation of brilliant ideas are aborted for no plausible reason but that the predecessor and successor belong to different political parties.
The other thing that popped up on was the plan to stop the use of candles and kerosene lamps. They will be replaced with clean solar energy lamps. I am not exactly excited by this, because it is very obvious that if our electricity supply was constant, we wouldn’t be using candles and kerosene lamps. Besides, the government should be trying to get rid of Generators. Apart from the fact that generator fumes are a cause of death in this part of the world, they are not in any way ozone friendly. Besides some people even use kerosene lamps and candles in addition to Generators. The reasons are not far-fetched: hike in fuel prices, fuel scarcity and routine servicing (that is, if the generator has not even packed up). Rechargeable lamps and torches may seem like an alternative, but we all know that they get dim after, say, two hours, and they don’t shine brightly after a month or two of continuous use.
While it is not exactly a bad idea, it is nevertheless a halfhearted attempt by the government to appear concerned about environmental conservation. Generators are so widely used that even those who live in one room apartments have their own. Now, imagine the situation in a ‘face-me-I-face-you” with over twenty rooms. The main point is this – ‘what is worth doing is worth doing well’.
So, this is it for me. The movement is still very active. What environmentally friendly programmes has your local government or state government put in place? What other policies of the federal government are you aware of? Do you think that Nigeria’s commitment to environmental conservation is questionable? Would your answer be different if power supply is not epileptic? What measures would you suggest? What part do you think you can play in this country’s journey to sustainable development?