The role of enforcement in environmental protection in Nigeria

Oruonye ED 1, * and Ahmed YM 2

1 Department of Geography, Taraba State University, Jalingo, Taraba State, Nigeria.
2 Department of Geography, Taraba State University, Jalingo, Taraba State, Nigeria.
Research Article
World Journal of Advanced Research and Reviews, 2020, 07(01), 048-056
Article DOI: 10.30574/wjarr.2020.7.1.0237
Publication history: 
Received on 30 June 2020; revised on 06 July 2020; accepted on 08 July 2020
The environment provides life support system to man. So many regulations and laws have been put in place to ensure adequate protection of the environment from man’s activities. Government has over the years established institutions that are given the responsibility of enforcing these laws and regulations to ensure compliance. Despite this legislative and institutional frameworks, effective compliance has become a mirage in the country. This paper examines the role of enforcement in environmental protection in Nigeria. The study adopted secondary desk review of existing literature. The findings of the study reveals that environmental regulations are the general rules and specific actions enforced by administrative agencies so as to control pollution and manage natural resources with the purpose of protecting the environment. The study findings reveal that the same government that put these structures in place is the main violator of the policies and provisions to protect the environment. This often leads to an atmosphere of system failure where, nothing works and the environment suffers for it. The benefits of enforcement of environmental regulations include creation of employment opportunities, protection of the environment and environmental sustainability. Some of the challenges of effective compliance to environmental regulations include outdated laws, high cost of environmental standards, weak institutional capacity, poor governance, under staffing, inadequate funding, vested interest, multiplicity of legislation/conflicting laws, ignorance and lack of rule of law among others. The study recommends employment of more staff, increase funding of environmental enforcement agencies, and review of old and outdated environmental laws and regulations.
Compliance; Enforcement; Environment; Framework; Institution; Regulation
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