The World Bank Group’s new Country Climate and Development Report (CCDR) for Ghana has identified six priority areas for a Climate Resilient and Low Carbon Development pathway that will foster more green, resilient, and inclusive growth in the country.
They are adopting an integrated approach to agriculture and environmental management by fostering integrated landscape management, promoting climate-smart agriculture, and supporting the adaptation of coastal communities.
The World Bank CCDR made available to the Ghana News Agency identified the other priorities as building sustainable cities and resilient infrastructure systems through better urban development, enhancements in resilient mobility infrastructure and services, and improved waste management.
The rest are boosting disaster risk preparedness through early warning systems, better national financial preparedness against climate shocks, and adaptive health and social protection systems.
It also looked at realizing new opportunities for managing forest resource as an asset for climate resilience, including for carbon sinks focusing on reversing deforestation and promoting cleaner cooking.
The CCDR also captured the promotion of a transition to clean energy by scaling up renewable energy sources and strengthening regional energy markets; and modernizing transport systems, by among others, improving public transportation and updating vehicle standards.
According to the World Bank, Ghana’s economic and human development is vulnerable to climate change, saying on the average, flooding affects around 45,000 Ghanaians every year, and half of Ghana’s coastline is vulnerable to erosion and flooding as a result of sea-level rise.
The report revealed that without prompt actions, higher temperatures and heat stress will affect crop and productivity, and more erratic rainfall patterns will damage buildings and infrastructure.
“Land degradation, water insecurity, and local air pollution will also hamper human capital and productivity,” the report stated.
Meanwhile, the report estimated that at least one million more people could fall into poverty due to climate shocks if urgent actions were not taken, adding, income could reduce by up to 40 percent for poor households by 2050.
The report, therefore, called on the country to pursue a development pathway that builds resilience to climate change and fosters a transition to low-carbon growth through a combination of policies and public and private investments.
The report acknowledged that Ghana has achieved major development gains over the past three decades, but progress has slowed down as the country had not fully managed to convert its natural wealth into sufficient infrastructure, human, and institutional capital for sustained growth.
Pierre Laporte, World Bank Country Director for Ghana, Liberia, and Sierra Leone explained that the report demonstrated that Ghana can simultaneously pursue its long-term development and climate goals.
The WB Country Director said “Ghana’s contribution to global greenhouse gases emissions is small, with emissions on a per capita basis at 24 percent of the global average.
“Ghana can take a more resilient development pathway, avoiding costly lock-ins, leapfrogging to cutting-edge technologies, and starting to mobilize climate finance.”
The World Bank Group’s CCDRs are new core diagnostic reports that explore the interlink between climate change and development.
They help countries prioritize the most impactful actions that can foster a low-carbon transition and boost resilience while delivering on broader development goals.
CCDRs build on data and rigorous research and identify main pathways to reduce GHG emissions, their externalities, and climate vulnerabilities, including the costs and challenges as well as benefits and opportunities from doing so.
The reports suggest concrete, priority actions to support the transition.
The CCDRs aim to inform governments, citizens, the private sector, development partners and all stakeholders engaged with the development and climate agenda.
CCDRs feed into other core Bank Group diagnostics, country engagements and operations, and help attract funding and direct financing for high-impact climate action.