The Eko Carbon Exchange launched its presence on the global stage on Wednesday, December 11, 2019, on the sidelines of the United Nations Climate Change Conference of Parties (COP25) held at the IFEMA Conference Center, Madrid, Spain. The launch which followed a side event conversation on Emissions Reduction Projects: Showcasing African Initiatives in Solid Waste and Transport Sectors.
The event attracted African and international experts and sustainability actors including members of the Nigerian delegation to the conference, labour unions, Environment activists, officials of the Federal Ministry of Transport as well as African and international civil society groups.
The Federal Ministry of Environment was represented by the Head of Climate Change Mitigation, Hajia Aisha Jibril. In the welcome address by the Managing Director of Eko Carbon Exchange, Mr. Innocent Azih, he noted that it is the first of such a platform in West Africa. He explained further how the Exchange is mobilizing to harness the opportunities in low-Carbon development across all economic sectors in the states of Nigeria, starting with the solid waste and transport sectors.
He said it will also serve as a regional vehicle for mobilizing finance for low-Carbon economic development for West African economies through the Clean Development Mechanism. “The objective is to mobilize the necessary resource pool and low-Carbon finance required for greening all economic sectors.”
In the speech of Hajia Aisha Jibril, Head of Climate Change Mitigation of the Federal Ministry of Environment, who represented the Director of Climate Change, Dr. Peter Tarfa, noted the readiness of the Federal Ministry of Environment to work with the Exchange to enable Nigeria achieve the nationally Determined Contributions through projects implementation that are fully mainstreamed.
She described effort made by the ministry from policy incentives, education and awareness of actors through Climate Change Desks at state levels, to development of the Nigerian Carbon emission registry. She asked stakeholders, including Eko Carbon Exchange to partner the ministry to ensure the early realization of the registry.
In a technical session, the Managing Director of Base Agency for Sustainable Energy, Mr. Daniel Magallon, said Africa is both the victim and beneficiary of new global efforts at containing emissions growth. He noted that the Eko Carbon Exchange is a veritable platform for partnership with their company in scaling their green projects in Africa.
Also, the Chief Executive Officer of Natural Eco Capital, Dr.Eugene Itua in his submission noted that tremendous emission reduction programmes have been on in Lagos State through the replacement of outdated mass transport vehicles with more modern and energy-efficient buses. Another panelist and Chief Executive Officer, A4&T Power Solutions, Mr. Ayodeji Ademilua posited that the Exchange will find huge opportunities in enabling financial incentives for greening the energy sector.
The panel noted that finance remained a major challenge to scaling green investments, but suggested that the best approach is the non-monetary approach in which financing packages for low-Carbon consumption comes with credit and insurance.
The high point of the global launch was the support of the participants led by the technical panel in the Eko Carbon declaration to work towards the Net-zero emissions 2030 target. It asked all relevant organisations and companies to partner by listing their projects, initiatives and offset their travels on the Exchange.
The participants congratulated Eko Carbon Exchange for the initiative and requested that Eko Carbon Exchange mobilizes stakeholders and actors in both the private and public sectors in this initiative.