Saturday, March 2, 2024

Africa climate summit is about growth ‘with dignity’

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More than a dozen African leaders and some of the world’s fiercest climate change campaigners are meeting in Kenya for the maiden edition of the Africa Climate Summit.

The event, which is being held from Monday until Friday, has been convened to address Africa’s increasing exposure to climate change and its associated costs on the continent.The summit in Nairobi is being organized by the Kenyan government and African Union and is running in parallel with Africa Climate Week. Its theme is “Driving green growth and climate finance solutions for Africa and the world”.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, US climate envoy John Kerry, COP28 Director-General Majid Al Suwaidi, and COP28 President Sultan Al Jaber are among the high-profile dignitaries who have confirmed attendance. COP28 will be the latest of the annual global climate summits when it takes place in December.

The ongoing Africa climate summit in Nairobi is a critical moment of solidarity for Africa to be able to leap into the future with dignity, environmental campaigner Wanjira Mathai has told the BBC.

Ms Mathai, who is the daughter of the late Nobel Peace Prize laureate Prof Wangari Mathai, says Africa is offering leadership based on solutions – with its abundant renewable energy, critical minerals and a young and fastest-growing workforce.

But she told the BBC’s Newsday programme that “we cannot adapt against abject poverty… this has to be about economic growth, development that is low carbon, sustainable and inclusive”.

She said she expects to see a push for a fair and equal access in the global markets for goods produced with green energy on the continent.

In addition, she said African countries have to get “fair and equal access to finance”.

“It’s one of the biggest demands on the table… global financial architecture that is rigged against Africa, paying eight times more for finance than the rest of the world. So finance is critical [as well as] technology and knowledge,” she said.

Maryvine Moraa
Maryvine Moraa
MBA, Business Administration & Accounting. A Passionate IT Enthusiast.

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