The Federal Ministry of Environment (FMEnv) and stakeholders in the sector have validated the National Waste Battery Management Policy as part of government’s effort to ensure the environmentally sound management (ESM) of waste batteries resulting from the accelerating use of renewable energy solutions.
Speaking during the validation exercise in Abuja, the Minister of Environment, Dr. Mohammad Abubakar, explained that the policy supported by the European Union (EU) and German Government, within the framework of the Nigerian Energy Support Programme, was developed in collaboration with several stakeholders in the sector.
He said the policy which had been subjected to rigorous reviews during several technical meetings and roundtable discussions, established the national standard of best practices for waste battery management in line with the provisions and recommendations of the Basel and the Bamako Conventions and other related guidelines for the environmentally sound management (ESM) of hazardous waste.
“The new National Waste Battery Management Policy will support the Nigerian government’s efforts to ensure the environmentally sound management (ESM) of waste batteries resulting from the accelerating use of renewable energy solutions, such as solar mini-grids to promote energy access in unserved or underserved areas in the country,” he added.
Underlining the importance of the new policy, the head of section, economic cooperation and energy at the European Union Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Ms Inga Stefanowicz, noted that it “will promote the practice of battery waste disposal in accordance with international standards. It will help address the environmental concerns of economic development based on technological advancements, such as in renewable energy or digital sectors.”
The validation event provided an overview of the objectives of the policy, the obligations of various stakeholders along different levels of the value chain to manage waste batteries in an environmentally sound way and the institutional framework for the policy implementation.
In his remarks, the head of programme, NESP, Mr. Duke Benjamin, stated “this milestone will go a long way in regulating the activities of the battery waste disposal industry, greatly reducing the release of toxic chemicals in the atmosphere and on surface and ground water”.
To ensure sustainability in policy implementation, he pointed out that NESP would continue to provide technical support and training to various battery recycling facilities in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Environment.
A statement by the ministry’s director of press, Saghir el Mohammed, said Nigerian Energy Support Programme (NESP) is a technical assistance programme co-funded by the European Union (EU) and the German Government.
“The programme is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Power (FMP). It aims to foster investments for renewable energy and energy efficiency and to improve access to electricity for the disadvantaged, mostly rural communities,” it added.