Global susceptible to the effects of climate change. In

           Global warming is now a global warning. An industrialized world heavily
dependent on fossil energy is extremely susceptible to the effects of climate
change. In the struggle for industrialization and advancement in technology,
anthropogenic activities have led to the
depletion of the ozone layer which has had adverse effects on the environment.
The impacts that are being felt as a result of global warming led to the search for a solution. One of the solutions
proffered was the usage of Low Carbon in the Economy. This is a concept aimed
at reducing the level of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere while
combining the use of better and cleaner energy sources with the proficient use
of already existing energy sources.

This
chapter will be providing a background to the study and the statement of the
problem. It will go further to list the objectives that will guide this
research study, as well as the scope, and the organization
of the study.

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1.1             
Background
to the study

           Development is a gradual process of
progression, growth or change. Development can be regarded as being two-sided as it has both positive and negative
impacts. Development has led to the dilapidation of the environment, because of
the desire for technological advancement and industrialization. Development is
pursued mostly at the expense of the environment.  No wonder the World Bank Report (1991)
describes development as the most important challenge facing the human race.
The reason being that development brings about a lot of problems in terms of
environmental sustainability while developing. The report went further to
elusively explain development as – improving quality of life which generally
connotes better education, higher standards of living, good health and
nutrition, less poverty, a cleaner environment, more equality of opportunity,
greater individual freedom, and a richer cultural life most especially for the
poor/developing countries.

           As a result of the negative impacts
of development, the concept Sustainable Development was birthed. Sustainable
Development has been defined in so many ways. The Brundtland Report (1987)
defines sustainable development as – development that meets the needs of the
present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their
own needs. Simply put, sustainable development can be said to be the continuous
development aimed at balanced growth or development in all areas without the
forfeiture of one for the other. There is a difference between “development”
and “sustainable development”, there can be development
in a country but is the development sustainable? That is the question every
country should be asking itself.

            One of the ways in which sustainable
development can be achieved is through the SDG. Sustainable Development Goals
(SDGs) is officially known as Transforming Our World: The 2030 Agenda for
Sustainable Development. (United Nations 2015). The Sustainable Development
Goals were adopted by all member states of the United Nations (including
Nigeria) between 25 and 27 September 2015
at the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit in New York, USA.
Following an intergovernmental negotiation on the post-2015 Development Agenda (IGN) which began in January 2015 and ended in August 2015 (UNDP 2015). The Sustainable
Development Goals are expected to last till 2030, it has 17 goals with 169
targets. The Sustainable Development Goals are fronted by the United Nations,
supported by all 193 member states. It can be found in paragraph 54 United
Nations Resolution A/RES/70/1 of 25 September 2015 (United Nations 2015). The
Sustainable Development Goals can be viewed as an upgrade from the Millennium
Development Goals, it is to build up and improve on the work of the Millennium
Development Goals. It is broader and covers a lot of areas where the world as a
whole is lacking and fills the holes which the Millennium Development Goals
had. The Sustainable Development Goals calls on all the individuals around the
world to come together wherever they are and achieve these goals to make the
planet a better place for living. The Sustainable Development Goals combine the
three dimensions of development in its goals (economic, social and
environment).

According
to the United Nations Resolution A/RES/70/1,
the Sustainable Development Goals are:

1.                             Consequently, as a result of these
goals, this research study will focus its attention on sustainable development goal
number 13. The Goal number 13 specifically addresses the issue of ecology,
environment, the risk from fossil fuel
energy, activities caused by industrialization and technological advancement in
our world, which has affected global warming and by extension threat to life
and the environment. This goal has an asterisk at the end because a statement
linked to the asterisk acknowledges that the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) serves as the primary global and
intergovernmental medium for discussing the reaction to climate change.

           In trying to achieve this goal, the
United Nations has set aside targets which it hopes to meet. The targets are centred on fortifying policies, resilient,
adaptive measures and capacity to climate-related
issues. Also, it involves the increase in awareness of the climate change
phenomenon and its impacts as well as the execution of the agreement made by
developed and developing countries that are party to the United Nations
Framework Convention on Climate Change. (United Nations 2015). Therefore, it is
assumed that if these targets are met, problems associated with environmental
degradation, global warming as well as depletion of the ozone layer would be
addressed. Equally, policy to reduce or use alternative energy source would
also change technological usage in industries and by such, the practice of a
low carbon will generate new employment structure for the betterment of the
society which is applicable in and to Nigeria.

1.2             
Statement
of the problem

           Man can’t exist without his
environment – the sustenance and maintenance of the environment are as vital as the air that man breathes. The
effects of climate change are being felt by the global community and Nigeria is
not left out. Nigeria appends its signature and shows public acknowledgement of being part of the various
initiatives set out by the global community to combat this growing problem.
However, government policies in addressing this issue are not in top gear. Anthropogenic and industrial activities such
as deforestation, desertification, pollution, extraction of resources,
urbanization, land degradation, emission of greenhouse gases, etc. are the
leading cause of climate change in Nigeria. An example of some of the
consequences of these activities are the
evaporation that is taking place in the Southern section of the Lake Chad that
lies in Nigeria. At some point in the past,
the Lake stretched over 26000 sq. km, whereas in recent times it only covers
1300 sq. km. (Kundan 2017). This was as a result of the alteration in the
climatic system that has led to increase in temperature. The Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO) has called the situation an “ecological catastrophe” and
predicts that the lake could disappear by the end of the century; According to
Vincent (2010), the desertification
occurring in the North is slowly moving to the South. The once copious Savannah
regions are now being turned into deserts as a result of adverse climatic
changes. Jumoke (2016) goes further to explain that neighbouring communities and farmlands are becoming barren and
being swallowed up by the progressing desertification. This has led to mass
migration of people, who are in search of more fertile land. Other issues of
climate change in Nigeria include droughts, rainstorms,
erosion, pollution, rising sea levels, heat-related mortality, the spread of infectious diseases, damage to public
infrastructures, poverty, migration of man and animals.

As
a result of the above-mentioned risk
environmental factor. This research is motivated by how Low Carbon Economy can
be promoted in line with the Sustainable Development Goal 13 to bring about a
safe haven into our world.

1.3             
Objectives
of the study

The
primary objective of this research study is the analysis of the prospects and
challenges of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (on environment) in
Nigeria through the Low Carbon Economy strategy.

 Therefore, the specific objectives of this
research study will be to:

1.                 
examine the utilization of an alternative source of energy as a measure to
address the Sustainable Development Goals in Nigeria.

2.                 
evaluate the impact of human activities
on climate change in Nigeria.

3.                 
determine the prospects of the Low
Carbon Economy as a measure to address climate change condition in Nigeria.

4.                 
identify the various challenges
militating against the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals in
Nigeria.

1.4             
Research
questions

The
questions which this research study aims to answer are:

1.                 
How can the utilization of an
alternative source of energy serve as a measure to address the Sustainable
Development Goals in Nigeria?

2.                 
What are the impacts of human activities
on climate change in Nigeria?

3.                 
What are the prospects of the LCE as a
measure in addressing climate change in Nigeria?

4.                 
What are the various challenges
militating against the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals in Nigeria?

1.5             
Significance
of the study

The
environment is a vital aspect of human life. Hence, any issue concerning the
environment should not be taken with levity. This study highlights the
importance of action against climate change and its impacts in Nigeria. It is
of great relevance as a result of the growing impacts of climate change which
continues to scourge Nigeria. This study will,
therefore, endeavour to illuminate
on the causes of climate change, its adverse impact on Nigeria and how to
address the issue. This modest effort can serve as a roadmap for the individuals, Nigerian government, global community,
industrialists, environmentalists and scientists to tackle climate change
issues. The responsibility of making and implementing policies, setting up
initiatives, entering into treaties or agreements, diversification of the
sources of energy as attempts to combat the impacts of climate change primarily
lies with the government.

1.6             
Scope
of the study

The
study covers the prospects and challenges of achieving the Sustainable
Development Goals (on environment) in Nigeria through the Low Carbon Economy
strategy. The specific Sustainable Development Goal the study will be
addressing is goal 13, which is to take urgent action to combat climate change
and its impacts. The geographical area of study is
Nigeria while the time frame is from 2015 – 2017.

1.7             
Organisation
of the study

This
section includes the categorization of
the study into Chapters. Hence, the chapters of this study will be segmented
into five. Chapter one consists of the introduction of the research study.
Chapter two will be to review existing literature as well as the theoretical
framework. Chapter three is about the methodology used in the research study.
Chapter four will be on data presentation, analysis,
and discussion of findings. Lastly,
chapter five will present the summary, conclusion,
and recommendations.