As extreme weather conditions continue to wreak havoc on the environment and put pressure on global ecosystems, African leaders are asking for more financial support to easily adapt to threats posed by the changing climate.
At a briefing at the ongoing 25th Conferences of Parties (COP 25) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change taking place in Madrid, Spain, several ministers from Africa demanded more climate adaptation support and benefits from the carbon market.
Barbara Creecy, president of the Africa Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN), said the Madrid conference has come at a pivotal time when science is sending a clear message that the world faces a climate emergency that requires every individual to act with a renewed sense of urgency.
“The market must benefit Africa and help finance our adaptation efforts,” Creecy said.
“Africa also requires the Madrid conference to recognise the special needs and circumstances of African countries and to advance work towards achieving the Paris Agreement’s global goal on adaptation, review the work of the Warsaw Mechanism on Loss and Damage and the Gender Action Plan,” she added.
Creecy, who is also leading the South African delegation to the conference, said the impact of climate change on the continent is real, and it is impacting mostly the poor and vulnerable groups in society.
Moreover, she noted that over the years every region on the continent has experienced the widespread impacts of climate change. Therefore, addressing the issues requires a commitment from the international community.
Creecy has called for a clean set of goals with timelines and targets for responding to climate change adaptation issues on the continent with regards to Article 6 of the Paris Agreement. Most of Article 6 deals with using carbon emissions' trading to find money that developing countries can use to combat climate change.
She also requested a fair share of profits from article 6.2 noting, “We need adequate finance and technology transfer. We believe that ambition for action must be matched with ambition for response.”
Mohammad Mahmood Abubakar, Nigeria’s minister for the environment, stated that sub-Saharan Africa has not received enough financing for adaptation measures.
“We have not gotten enough finance for adaptation and we need to get enough. We are the ones really getting the short end of the stick,” Abubakar noted.
“A number of financial pledges that were signed or undertaken have not come through so far, and we are calling on the developed countries who have been majorly the polluters to come through and make their promises come through,” he added.
At the conference, the African Development Bank will highlight the Desert to Power project and present Africa’s climate finance issues.
“2020 is a critical year in securing adequate resources for African countries to meet their Paris Agreement commitments; clarity and transparency on global climate finance access is essential to deliver climate action faster and at scale,” said Anthony Nyong, director of the climate change and green growth department at the African Development Bank.
Banner image: Nigeria's Minister of Environment speaking during his presentation on climate financing / Credit: Josephine Okojie