Climate Change is the defining issue of our time and we are at a defining moment. From shifting weather patterns that threaten food production to rising sea levels that increase the risk of catastrophic flooding, the impacts of climate change are global in scope and unprecedented in scale. Without drastic action today, adapting to these impacts in the future will be more difficult and costly.
The impacts of climate change are being felt everywhere and are having very real consequences on people’s lives. Climate change is disrupting national economies, costing us dearly today and even more tomorrow. But there is a growing recognition that affordable, scalable solutions are available now that will enable us all to leapfrog to cleaner, more resilient economies.
The Paris Agreement adopted in 2015, was an essential step to address climate change. It has the central goal of keeping global average temperature rise this century to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to as close as possible to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
The Africa Climate Week – Accra, Ghana
The Africa Climate Week (ACW) Summit was hosted in Accra at the Accra International Conference Center (AICC) between 18th – 22nd March 2019. The Summit focused on key sectors where action can make the most difference — heavy industry, nature-based solutions, cities, energy, resilience, and climate finance. The ACW witnessed a representation of various policy makers, opinion leaders and civil society, private sector, indigenous communities, and all climate stakeholders gathered at the AICC to exchange best practices around inclusion, collaboration and engagement in advancement of the Paris agreement and Katowice rule book with a view to finding lasting solutions to tackle climate change with ambitious actions for Nationally Determined Contributions NDCs, as we protect those most vulnerable and impacted by changing climate, the Africa Climate Week was flag open by H.E Nana Akufo-Addo President of Republic of Ghana.
President Akufo-Addo has said measures to deal with the phenomenon of climate change are contained in his Government’s Co-ordinated Programme of Economic and Social Development
Policies. According to President Akufo-Addo, government’s flagship programmes such as the programmes for “Planting for Food and Jobs”, “One-Village-One-Dam”, and “One-District-One-Factory”, are all geared towards boosting industrialization and rural development, as well as building Ghana’s resilience to the impacts of climate change.
Ghana has placed a ban on illegal mining, the phenomenon called ‘galamsey’, which was destroying our water bodies, vegetation and our forests. Ghana has made a commitment to plant 10 million trees in two years to create jobs, and restore degraded land, thus has engaged twenty thousand (20,000) young people to get this than.
The summit is a wakeup call for both the developing and developed countries who are at risk to climate change and ensuring that citizens are not left behind, transparently developing the needed framework and engaging with relevant stakeholders in pursuance of the implementation of NDCs by respective member states. The global transition to green energy deviled of fossil fuels that pollute the environment. looking at the agreement have many issues on adaptation and mitigation through the NDCs, loss and damages, adaptation fund, finance, transfer of technology, transparency, support, and capacity development gap, most of all these elements still remain a great challenge to implementing the ambitious agreement. It is important to note that some of these issues where separately looked into through a facilitative dialogue and breakout session.
The facilitation of experience sharing, knowledge dissemination and strengthen regional collaboration, the summit aims at designing and implementing a robust regional information exchange between CSOs, government, private sector, forum for local government, youth and indigenous communities, these form bases of the week; as a new road map for climate change mitigation and adaption was also design for countries to meet up with their NDCs target.
HIGHLIGHT FROM THE SESSION ATTENDED
CPLC Workshop at Africa Climate Week
On Tuesday, March 19 at Africa Climate Week, the World Bank Group (WBG) and International Emissions Trading Association (IETA) hosted a Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition (CPLC) workshop on Carbon Pricing, Markets, and Sustainable Development in Africa. This all-day event showcased how policies and programs to put a price on carbon can mobilize climate investment, drive social benefit, and reduce carbon pollution. The agenda featured key stakeholders who are either implementing, considering, or advancing carbon pricing—including representatives from Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, South Africa, Rwanda, Senegal, and Nigeria. Drawing over 250 participants, the key takeaways included:
1) There is a compelling case to price carbon to drive sustainable development in Africa;
2) Momentum for carbon pricing is building in Africa, but more needs to be done to expand coverage of initiatives across the continent;
3) Communication and stakeholder engagement are key to ensuring carbon pricing initiatives are equitable and aligned with larger development goals;
4) Cooperation—domestically, regionally, and internationally—can facilitate greater ambition and efficiency of carbon pricing initiatives.
PACJA Workshop at Africa Climate Week
The Pan Africa Climate Justice Alliance PACJA and partners hosted Africa Rational Consultative Workshop on REDD+ this session brought government, CSOs and coalition leaders who are Climate Change advocate in Africa with representatives from the Africa Development Bank, REDD+, Ministry of Finance Ghana and Green Climate Fund, Solidaridad, Climate and Sustainable Development Network of Nigeria which also form the Nigeria delegations were fully represented to make their inputs. Sharing lessons learned from the sub-grantees presentations of achievements, linkages with national REDD+ process, challenges and best practices from their work with an exhibition of sub-grantees activities with the REDD+ Focal points and other countries delegation.
THE OBJECTIVE OF THE WORKSHOP
To broaden the conversation around the FCPF capacity building program and broader REDD+ Readiness /implementation process
To strengthen the REDD+ community of practice among 18 FCPF countries in Africa through learning, and experience sharing from civil society and IPs engagement in the REDD+ processes
To propose recommendations and specific actions to inform the project implementation
To influence Africa Climate Week discussion in best practices and recommendation
The meeting produces indicators and baseline for partnership, inclusion for development of climate change adaption, the need for more awareness creation on climate change and REDD+ processes to strengthen indigenous people community-based forest conservation.
SIDE EVENT: SHOWCASING INNOVATIVE SOLUTIONS AND WAYS FORWARD TO TACKLE CLIMATE CHANGE
The Green Climate Fund and NDC implementation in Africa an associated event of the Africa Climate Week: The green climate fund (GCF) which was established in accordance with Article 11 of the UNFCCC in 2010 this fund exists to support the developing countries to facilitate limiting their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and adapting to climate change. The event outlined the current state of play and challenges following the Katowice climate change conference, ahead of the 22nd meeting of the head of the board of the United Nations Secretary-General Climate Summit in September 2019. With specific objective for participant to advance the understanding of GCF matters and recent development and challenges including potentials, sharing knowledge and experience on the GCF readiness and engagement matters from various Africa countries, including focus on role of GCF supporting NDC implementation in Africa, identifying effective strategies to overcome barriers for CSOs engagement and increase the impact that Africa Civil Society can play on GCF matter.
During the opening remark Mr Mithika Wmenda the executive secretary of Pan Africa Climate Justice Alliance talk about the huge knowledge gap and the need for CSOs to build their capacity and engage on the GCF readiness and the implementation of Climate Action in Africa, for us to achieve the Africa we want, we must build our capacity for readiness to take action.
Looking at gender analysis understanding the kind of capacity they need, producing indicators and baseline partnership they require to ensure no one is left behind
The session looked at the level and roles each country plays in CSO engagement with national GCF structure, what strategies are needed to harness the diversified increase and objective of CSO, country project design and implementation strategy.
What opportunities available for CSO to tap into on country specifics and how to develop a new partnership for enhanced GCF knowledge and engagement, what strategy is being used by CSOs to reach out to national and regional networks? How CSOs circumvent communication barriers sharing GCF relations issues? How are CSOs contributed to the policy process in relation to the GCF nationally? and what has been CSO priority and approach to influence national-level policies on climate change.?
Sharing lesson from CSOs whose country has Won GCF, the CSOs that share their perspective were Ghana, Morocco, and Malawi they shared what their key challenges and what worked well for them, from the perspective of the Ghana CSOs said they had cordial relationship with the government who is interested, in turn, has showed readiness to implement climate change mitigation and adaption as a country and has put in place structure to attract the GCF and another financial facility, some of the reforms were seen from the Ghana ministry of finance has taken bold steps in building the capacity of CSOs on the GCF readiness, today those CSOs can now attempt to apply for the GCF, I think this initiative should be replicated by other countries.
PRIVATE SECTOR EVENT:
ASTEVEN GROUP Facilitated Event that focus on reducing energy poverty by harnessing domestic resource mobilization for NDC Implementation In Africa Special focus on renewable energy development : this meeting took place at Conference Room One at the Accra International Conference center this meeting focus on solutions to end energy poverty indicating renewable energy as a critical tool to successfully implement NDCs, this will help reduce emission, provide alternative to fossil fuel and generators, the President and Founder talked about the best way to bridge the huge energy gap in most Africa countries . Harnessing domestic resources for NDCs Implementation in Africa Asteven Group facilitated the season and share success stories of how they harnessed local contents for capacity building, project development, finance and supporting electrification and implementation of scalable NDC related intervention in the Energy sector.
According to the President and Founder Dr. Sunny Akpoyibo said African has the solutions to address climate change, if we build the needed synergy, putting our resource together and government providing the enabling environment, structure and supporting the development of technical innovations needed to develop capacity not plenty of words without action; what Africa needs now is climate action and the time to demand it is now. No NDCs will work without private sector involvement, integrating this component, building a sustainable partnership with the private sector, Non-government organizations it will go a long way to ending energy poverty. I have been providing renewable energy technology that is reducing emission, building capacity and today it is creating jobs for youths, if this effort is supported by Africa states this will create more green jobs for our youth, and reduce emission.
Solidaridad complements a panel Session on Smart Agricultural Practice discussion on how climate change manifests in local communities, the impact of climate change in relationship with land use and local livelihood sharing experience on the sustainable west Africa palm oil programme, cocoa agroforestry practices in Liberia and Ghana. National initiative for sustainable and climate-smart Oil Palm Smallholder success story was shared, Cocoa and Palm Oil as an important cash crop which export potential remains under-developed, discussion of this session center on increasing community awareness for the smart agricultural practice, the need to bridge the gap through information sharing with farmers informing the people on the need for improvising seeds with high yield.