Facing droughts, sandstorms, floods, wildfires, coastal erosion, cyclones and other weather events exacerbated by climate change, the African continent needs to adapt but needs funds to do so, continent leaders and negotiators said at climate summit from the ONU.
It is one of the main priorities of the African Group of Negotiators at the summit, known as COP27, currently underway in Egypt. Ephraim Shitima, chairman of the group, said Africa wants to see the results of the negotiations translated into action for the continent, where millions face climate-related disasters.
Shitima said the summit “should provide solutions to the millions of people on the continent,” adding that Africa needs financing to adapt to extreme weather as well as “to facilitate a just energy transition and boost renewable energy consumption.”
A recent study published by the World Bank said that climate-related events will push more than 132 million people into poverty worldwide and that African countries will lose 10-15% of their GDP by 2050. .
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Africa produces just 4% of the world’s planet-warming emissions despite accounting for 17% of the world’s population, but is particularly vulnerable to climate change.
Climate financing to adapt to climate-related disasters and prevent them from worsening remains a thorny issue in climate negotiations. The promise of $100 billion a year in climate finance has yet to be fulfilled, even though it is two years past its deadline.
Speakers in the Africa Pavilion at the conference reflected on bridging the gap between the continent’s climate finance needs and what it actually receives, which is currently estimated at between $160 billion and $340 billion by the African Development Bank for 2030.
Earlier this week, Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne called for taxing the profits of fossil fuel companies to help developing countries and small island states adapt to climate change and move towards clean energy. .
“We know they make exorbitant profits,” he said. He added that countries would seek compensation for climate damages from major polluters, known as loss and damage in climate negotiations.
“We see this financing of loss and damage as a form of solidarity of the nations that are united with each other and as a form of financing for the countries that are in danger,” said Brown.
Seychelles President Wavel Ramkalawan said leaders of the Alliance of Small Island States are also seeking new financial facilities for loss and damage.
“We’re definitely pushing for that,” Ramkalawan told The Associated Press.
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The Least Developed Countries group, which represents some 46 low-income nations, has also put money for adaptation and loss and damage among its main demands.
“COP27 must keep adaptation at the core,” said Madeleine Sarr, chair of the LDC group, adding that the group “wants to see how the shortfall in the $100bn per year pledge will be made up.”