African officials renew call for financing to deliver climate justice

Opening Ceremony
Opening Ceremony

The quest for climate justice in Africa will be realized subject to the availability of funds, technology, and capacity building to help the continent withstand extreme weather events like droughts, floods, and cyclones, officials said on Monday.

Jean Paul-Adams, director for technology, climate change, and natural resources management at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), said the continent’s green and justice transition is possible once the financing gap toward climate mitigation and adaptation is bridged.

Africa requires 7 billion to 15 billion U.S. dollars annually to enhance resilience in the face of climate emergencies, Paul-Adams told the second edition of the Nairobi Summer School on Climate Justice workshop in the Kenya capital.

In addition, he said, the continent should leverage concessional lending from bilateral partners and green investments from the local private sector to strengthen its capacity to cope with climatic shocks.

Paul-Adams called for improved governance, transparency, and monitoring to ensure that adaptation financing benefits local communities bearing the brunt of climate-induced disasters like recurrent droughts and disease outbreaks.

Convened by the Nairobi-based Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA), the summer school on climate justice, to run from June 27 to July 10, brought on board senior policymakers, youthful campaigners, donors, and scholars to discuss new pathways for realizing a just, inclusive and green transition in the continent.

More than 800 virtual and in-person delegates attending the two-week forum will explore innovative ways to tackle the continent’s huge climate financing gap, PACJA acting executive director Charles Mwangi said.

For Africa to overcome poverty and underdevelopment linked to climatic stresses, Mwangi said, the continent should bargain for its fair share of funding from multilateral lenders besides leveraging domestic resources.

“Adaptation financing is crucial to help Africa liberate itself from climate emergencies that have led to the loss of lives and livelihoods,” he said.

Investing in youthful innovators would be key to realizing a low-carbon and ecologically resilient growth in a continent that contributes less than 4 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions but suffer most from adverse impacts of a warming planet, Mwangi said.

Amr Essam, an Egyptian diplomat and senior advisor to COP27 Presidency, said that multilateral processes aimed at advancing carbon neutrality in Africa will only be successful once the continent is availed with funds and clean technologies.

Essam said the 27th conference of parties (COP27) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, slated for Nov. 8-20 in Egypt, will be a watershed moment for Africa in its quest for adequate green financing. Enditem

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