‘Change Consumer Habits to Resolve Climate Change’- HE Gabriel Mbaga Lima
Story by: Magdalene Duncan
H.E Gabriel Mbaga Obiang Lima, Minister of Mines and Hydrocarbons , Equatorial Guinea, has called on consumers to change their habits in the consumption of energy in order to help tackle the challenges of climate change globally.
H.E Lima made this call whilst speaking on the 2nd day of the MSGBC Oil, Gas & Power Conference and Exhibition in Dakar recently.
The MSGBC Oil, Gas & Power Conference and Exhibition is the leading energy event for the MSGBC Region and takes place in Dakar, Senegal annually. It’s focus is to drive investment, debates and networking opportunities for the region’s energy elite.
In his address, the Minister, pointed out that “major consumer markets and unsustainable consumer habits are the true challenges to tackling climate change.”
“We want to make it very clear that we do not deny climate change. Climate change is real, but there are two sides to the story; that of the producer and that of the consumer.” He stated.
Adding that,”The amount of energy used to play video games in the United States is equivalent to that used by the whole Nigerian Central Government. You cannot just blame the producers. You need to address consumption and consumer habits. ”
H.E Lima further noted that,” its definitely a responsibility of the consumer to consume in a more sustainable manner. That is why when there are protests against the producers, they seem driven by people that don’t understand that we are the ones keeping the lights on and that they are the ones that need to change their habits in order to protect the environment. ”
He was of the view that ” Africa first needs to address energy poverty before we can talk about energy transition. Energy poverty exists. It’s a reality in much of Africa. You can not talk about energy transition without first providing electricity to your people.”
He therefore called on Senegal, Mozambique and Uganda, Africa’s new oil and gas producers, to “speak up and defend their rights to develop their resources because they are the ones with the most to lose”.