As of Friday 12th Novemever 2021, Africa and the world were waiting with bated breath on a comprehensive climate change deal to emerge from Cop26. The continent, which scientists say will disproportionately suffer from the effects of climate change despite contributing only a fraction of greenhouse gas emissions, is pushing for a global deal and huge financial support through the African Group of Negotiators, chaired by Gabon's Tanguy Gahouma-Bekale. The importance of a comprehensive deal involving the world's top emitters cannot be underestimated, and African policymakers are desperate to have a positive working basis for next year's Cop27 in Egypt.
Still, Africa has made encouraging progress in subsidiary discussions throughout the week. South Africa signed a pivotal $8.5bn deal with the US, EU and UK to help the country transition from its damaging reliance on coal. The Green Climate Fund and the International Fund for Agricultural Development have committed $143m to the African Union's Great Green Wall Initiative to plant trees, grasslands, vegetation and plants across the Sahara and Sahel to restore degraded land. The European Union and other partners have committed €250m to protect the critical forests of the Congo Basin, covering eight west and central African countries, part of a €1bn global forests commitment. All of this is welcome. Yet Africa and its donors know that without a comprehensive deal, such announcements will be little more than a plaster over a gaping wound.
on the other hand, After extending the COP26 climate negotiations an extra day, nearly 200 countries in Glasgow, Scotland, adopted on Saturday an outcome document that, according to the UN Secretary-General, reflects the interests, the contradictions, and the state of political will in the world today.
“It is an important step but is not enough. We must accelerate climate action to keep alive the goal of limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees”, said António Guterres statement released at the close of the two-week meeting.
The UN chief added that it is time to go “into emergency mode”, ending fossil fuel subsidies, phasing out coal, putting a price on carbon, protecting vulnerable communities, and delivering the $100 billion climate finance commitment.
“We did not achieve these goals at this conference. But we have some building blocks for progress,” he said.
Mr. Guterres also had a message to young people, indigenous communities, women leaders, and all those leading the charge on climate action.
“I know you are disappointed. But the path of progress is not always a straight line. Sometimes there are detours. Sometimes there are ditches. But I know we can get there. We are in the fight of our lives, and this fight must be won. Never give up. Never retreat. Keep pushing forward”.
Join us in the disability sausage YouTube channel for much mouthwatering articles
The views expressed here are for the author and do not represent any agency or organization.
Mugambi Paul is a public policy, diversity, inclusion and sustainability expert.
Australian Chief Minister Award winner
“Excellence of making inclusion happen”