Climate Watch: AfDB approves $115m loan for erosion control, waste management in Abia

Despite directly impacting our communities, health, and livelihood, climate-related reports usually take a back seat to dominant news beats like politics and business. Climate Watch aims to ensure you never miss important stories on climate change and actions being taken toward limiting its impact.

Here is a round-up of last week’s climate stories:

On June 30m, Ogbonnia Okereke, head of the Abia state task force on waste management, said Umuahia and Aba generate about 270 truckloads of domestic and commercial waste daily. Okereke said the state has only four “fairly manageable” compactor trucks and needed about 20 more to ensure effective waste evacuation in the two cities. Okereke warned residents against indiscriminate dumping of refuse.

The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group has approved a $115 million loan for the rehabilitation of roads, control of erosion and management of solid waste in Umuahia and Aba in Abia state. Finances for the project, estimated at $263.80 million, consists of a $100 million AfDB loan, a Canada-African Development Bank Climate Fund (CACF) credit of $15 million, and a $125 million co-financing loan from the Islamic Development Bank. The Abia state government will also provide $23.80 million in funding for compensation to people affected by the project and implementation of a resettlement action plan. A total of 248.46 km of road, comprising 58.03 km and 190.43 km in Umuahia and Aba respectively, are to be rehabilitated in asphaltic concrete. Erosion sites in both cities would be reinstated. There would also be preparatory studies for private sector participation in solid waste management.

The project, which is expected to be completed in 2029, would also include capacity building, development of social infrastructure, and provision of sanitation facilities in schools, community markets and hospitals.

Last week at an event organised by Minority Rights Group International (MRG), Mercy Ette, a senior lecturer at the University of Leeds, said the people of Ogoni lacked access to clean water. Ette attributed the development to pollution from oil production in the community. She said the activities of oil companies in Ogoni have resulted in a reduction in the life expectancy of residents of the community.

Shehu Ahmed, executive secretary of the federal capital development authority (FCDA), on July 2, said the FCT administration would demolish all structures blocking waterways which are responsible for the flooding in some parts of Abuja. Ahmed said flooding in the city is a man-made problem caused by residents who violate the Abuja master plan. He said the demolition of structures built on flood plains is what must be done to save lives.

A report by the World Resources Institute (WRI) showed that the world is headed in the opposite direction with regard to reducing forest loss. In 2021, 145 countries under the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forests and Land Use, had vowed to reverse forest loss. However, data from the report showed that there was 10 percent more primary rainforest loss in 2022 than in 2021.

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