The Federal Government says Nigeria must not be a dumping ground for air conditioners and refrigerators with energy efficiency ratio that are below internationally acceptable minimum energy performance standard.
This came as the United Nations says Nigerians purchase about one million air conditioners every year.
Meanwhile, the Federal Government told the Nigeria Customs Service, Standard Organisation of Nigeria, and other relevant agencies, to be alive to their responsibilities, stressing that the influx of substandard cooling appliances posed danger to the climatic conditions across the country.
This came as the United Nations Environment Programme announced that over one million air conditioners were sold annually in Nigeria, adding that this was eating deep into the finances of Nigerians with respect to energy bills.
Speaking at the National Stakeholders’ Consultative Workshop on Energy Efficient and Climate-Friendly Cooling in Nigeria, the Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Adeleke Momara, said the enforcement of laws should be intensified.
After listening to a presentation by the UNEP Programme Management Officer, Brian Holuj, on the magnitude of pollution caused by the influx of substandard cooling devices imported into Nigeria, Mamora charged the NCS and SON to be alive to their duties.
“I listened to your presentation and certain issues were raised in it. There is the issue of monitoring and enforcement of protocols. Often times, we have beautiful policies and laws, but it is not the beauty of the policy, guideline or law that matters. It is the zeal for implementation that is most important.
“You mentioned this issue of Minimum Energy Performance Standard. What I think is that you have a minimum standard, but if there is no compliance with that, then we cannot get results. And if we must get results, it means the enforcement agencies must be alive to their responsibilities.
“The customs, Standard Organisation of Nigeria, and other relevant agencies need to be alive to their responsibilities and ensure that Nigeria does not become a dumping ground, where you just bring in all sorts of products that are not in line with what we expect by way of standards,” the minister stated.
He said the workshop, which was organised by the Energy Commission of Nigeria and UNEP, was aimed at promoting energy efficiency best practices in the cooling sector in Nigeria.
Momara said UNEP officials flew into Nigeria to support the country’s transition from inefficient cooling appliances to the most efficient ones in line with Nigeria’s commitment to mitigating climate change challenges.
He said, “It is a fact that Nigeria is the largest market in Africa, and this also applies to the cooling sector. With the current growing population, combined with improving lifestyle, urbanisation and rising global warming, Nigeria will continue to experience growing demand for air conditioners, refrigerators and other cooling devices.
“Thus becoming one of the fastest growing air conditioners and refrigerators market in the world. Unfortunately, most of the air conditioners utilised in the country have an energy efficiency ratio below internationally acceptable minimum energy performance standard.”