In December 2022, the government of Nigeria submitted a technical legal assistance request for the development of a legislative framework to address plastic waste pollution in Nigeria. Specifically, the request outlined two areas of support: first, development of a Plastic Waste Regulation based on the National Policy on Plastic Waste of 2020, and; second, establishment of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Operational Guidelines on plastic waste control. For this, UNEP would collaborate with the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA).
Development of plastic waste regulations and EPR guidelines will strengthen Nigeria’s efforts to address the human health and environmental impacts posed by plastic pollution and bring the county’s legal framework into line with international legal developments, primarily the plastic waste amendments to the Basel Convention on Transboundary Movement of Hazardous and Other wastes that took effect in January 2021. The activity also responds to legislative gaps that have been identified in the country’s National Policy on Plastic Waste, 2020.
From the initial assessment of the request and consultations with the National Focal Point, it was agreed that UNEP’s support would be channelled through an already existing project managed by the Montevideo Programme V secretariat, under the United Nations Development Account framework. This project seeks to strengthen waste management frameworks for four countries in Africa, including Nigeria. Additionally, some of the components that fell beyond the scope of the Montevideo Programme V would be addressed under the country’s arrangements with other partners such as the European Union.
Nigeria: Ibrahim Musa, Assistant Director, Legal Services Department, National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) (Montevideo Programme V National Focal Point)
UNEP: Sylvia Bankobeza, Legal Officer-Montevideo Coordination and Delivery Unit