Waste Management in Nigeria: CoM SSA Urban Lab brings Abuja and Lagos together

Published: 18 Jun 2024
Mitigation Success Stories
Waste Management in Nigeria: CoM SSA Urban Lab brings Abuja and Lagos together

The Abuja Urban Lab is a pivotal initiative of the Covenant of Mayors in Sub-Saharan Africa (CoM SSA), focusing on creating a sustainable waste management system in Nigeria’s capital city. In 2022, the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) launched its Sustainable Energy Access and Climate Action Plan (SEACAP), setting ambitious targets for climate change adaptation, mitigation, and improved access to sustainable energy. One key focus of the SEACAP for Abuja was waste management.

Officially launched in December 2023, the Abuja Urban Lab aims to establish a successful governance structure for waste management and promote the development of climate-responsive infrastructure. This initiative adopts a participatory approach, engaging a wide range of stakeholders to identify and co-create concrete solutions for waste governance issues. The Abuja Urban Lab highlights the importance of collaborative efforts to generate actionable insights and future investments, ensuring the sustainability of waste management practices in Abuja.
A recent milestone in the Abuja Urban Lab was the city-to-city exchange with the Lagos State government held in May. Motivated by Lagos State's achievements in managing its complex waste environment and co-organised with the support of Nile University, this city-to-city exchange focused on studying and learning from Lagos's successful waste management models. As a coastal megacity, producing 13,000 to 15,000 metric tonnes of waste daily, Lagos faces significant challenges. Therefore, effective waste governance is central to Lagos State’s Mega-City Project, outlined in the Lagos State Development Plan (LSDP) for 2025 and 2052, and the Cleaner Lagos Initiative (CLI), which emphasises policy reforms, public-private partnerships, inclusive governance, and technology-driven solutions.

During the visit, the team met with the Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA), Ikeja Local Government, Waste Management Society of Nigeria (WAMASON), the Recyclers Association of Nigeria, and visited the Olusosun Waste Dumpsite.

This exchange succeeded in broadening the knowledge of the Abuja Urban Lab delegation, which included stakeholders from the Abuja Municipal Area Council, Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), Waste Pickers Association of Nigeria (WAPAN), the Association of Women Town Planners of Nigeria, and the youth group Nile Climate Initiative. Leveraging Lagos's successful approaches, including policy reforms, public-private partnerships, and inclusive governance, Abuja will develop more effective waste management policies. Key findings and insights will be shared with the wider network of stakeholders engaged in the Abuja Urban Lab in an upcoming workshop to promote the co-development of waste management solutions for the city.

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