GLASGOW. – African leaders are continuing to push the international community for more financial justice to adapt to the effects of climate change.
Speaking on Tuesday at the COP26 summit in Glasgow, the head of the African Union, Congolese President Felix Tshisekedi highlighted Africa’s plight.
“The Accelerated Adaptation Programme in Africa is a crucial mechanism that is expected to deploy a significant portion of the billion dollars a year promised to developing countries. In conclusion, while we are discussing adaptation and resilience, we also need to protect Africa’s forests and oceans that serve as natural carbon sinks. It is time for Africa to be compensated for the good of the planet” said Mr Tshisekedi.
The president of the African Development Bank, Akinwumi Adesina, also delivered a speech at the event.
“Africa loses seven to US$15 billion a year due to climate change, which could rise to US$50 billion a year by 2040. The continent will need US$336 billion to adapt to climate change, and this does not include several billion dollars needed to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic. Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen. Africa simply cannot breathe”, announced Akinwumi Adesina.
Africa’s 54 nations contribute only about 3 percent of global emissions, a fact that surprises many people when they find out. The continent is also home to 1.3 billion people.
Kenya President Uhuru Kenyatta called on leaders of wealthier nations to take into consideration the “special needs and circumstances of Africa.” in the fight against climate change.
Mr Kenyatta said Kenya has developed a plan to maintain low carbon development trajectory by 2030.
He further called on leaders of developed nations to provide taylor made support for Africa as Africa has its own challenges.
“We expect that detailed rules and procedures for implementing the Paris Agreement will be finalised and a clear way forward for a climate-resilient pathway set. We also expect that the agreement will be sufficiently inclusive to accommodate the needs and priorities of developing countries and in particular, the special needs and circumstances of Africa.”
Dozens of small island states and major low-lying cities worldwide are worried about the impact climate change could have on their country if urgent measures are not taken.
The President of Seychelles, Wavel John Charles Ramkalawan said “When I hear the expression rising sea level, I am scared because it brings home the awareness that my country’s granitic islands will lose all the economic activities happening around the coast,” said during his address.
Ramkalawan added that he feared the Seychelles, “the beautiful archipelago of 115 islands,” may be reduced to less than 50 islands as the coral reefs disappear.
He said the Seychelles is “less responsible” for the planet’s destruction, “but on the contrary are doing our utmost.” – afrcanews.com