Nigeria, a country with ambitious goals to achieve net-zero emissions by 2060 while improving the standard of living, electricity access, and economic growth, has found a valuable partner in the Netherlands. The Netherlands is committed to supporting Nigeria’s efforts in transitioning to a green economy through various collaborative initiatives, including solar energy, food waste recycling, and regreening the Sahel.
Collaborating for a sustainable future
On June 7th, the Netherlands Nigeria Clean Tech Event took place in Abuja, Nigeria, where the esteemed presence of Vice-Minister for Foreign Trade of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Hanneke Schuilings, the Nigerian Ambassador to The Netherlands, Dr. Eniola Ajayi, the Ambassador of the European Union to Nigeria, Samuela Isopi, and the Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Nigeria, Wouter Plomp, highlighted the importance of bilateral cooperation in addressing environmental and social challenges.
Tackling food waste in Lagos and beyond
Lagos, Nigeria’s coastal megacity, faces significant waste management challenges due to its rapid urbanization and population growth. With over 20 million residents, Lagos is the fourth largest city globally, and the city’s growth has led to an increase in solid waste generation. Among the types of waste generated, organic waste constitutes the largest portion, originating from both residential consumption and industrial activities.
Unfortunately, most of this food waste finds its way to the streets or landfills, causing environmental and health hazards. Organic waste, in particular, poses a severe threat as it emits methane gas during decomposition, contributing strongly to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. Additionally, the disposal of food waste in landfills pollutes groundwater, leading to eutrophication of water bodies.
It all starts with awareness.
Most of the Nigerians don’t perceive organic waste as a pollutant. At this Clean Tech Event, Coen Bakker, Marketing Manager at The Waste Transformers informed and inspired the audience about the world of food waste. Here too is a need to create public awareness and provide tools to deal with non-preventable food waste streams. Food waste holds immense potential to contribute to a circular economy and address sustainability challenges. The Waste Transformers, the innovative Dutch company, is leading the way by raising awareness and implementing practical on-site solutions around food waste. During the Netherlands Nigeria Clean Tech Event, The Waste Transformers educated and inspired the audience about the value of on-site food waste transformation.
The company has initiated a groundbreaking project in Freetown, Sierra Leone, by strategically placing containerized biodigesters throughout the city. These biodigesters convert food waste into electricity and heat, while also producing natural fertilizer from the nutrients. To facilitate food waste collection, The Waste Transformers collaborates with informal youth groups who play a crucial role in collecting the food waste and delivering it to the biodigesters.
Clean Tech Event: A platform for solutions
The Netherlands Nigeria Clean Tech Event witnessed an overwhelming response, with more than 300 sign-ups showing great interest and demonstrating the urgent need for solutions in Nigeria. The topics discussed during the event encompassed clean energy access, food security, and job creation, all of which can be effectively addressed through innovative solutions like The Waste Transformers’ biodigesters. By leveraging innovative technologies and fostering collaborations, both countries are paving the way for a greener and more inclusive future.
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