The #COP21: For a strong and binding agreement in Paris

Climate change matters for all of us. No country, region, nor continent can meet this challenge alone. It is the future of the planet and of our children and future generations that is at stake.

Greenhouse gas emissions released anywhere aggravate the threat everywhere:

While developing countries are not responsible for the effects of climate change, they are currently the most affected. They are hit hardest because they are less equipped to cope with the effects of climate change.

 Africa is only responsible for 268 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions which is 4% of global emissions against 10,560 million metric tons (China), 9,700 (Japan), 6,201 (USA).

The agriculture and fisheries industries, which are the foremost economic activities in developing countries, are facing the heat waves, extreme droughts and floods due to changing weather patterns brought about by global warming.

Climate change has become not a threat of the future, but rather a very present threat.  It threatens societies, the ecosystems and environment that sustain them. The consequences are severe and even worsening. Climate change and environment degradation are responsible for continuing famine, land dilapidation and water shortage which have devastating effects on populations mainly in the horn of Africa. Similarly, Small Island States in the Pacific are condemned to disappear.

Despite contributing almost nothing to global emissions, Africa is one of the world's most vulnerable to the effects of climate change with:

•             a projected drop by 50% in agricultural yields in some countries by 2020, potentially rising to 90% by 2100;

•             an unprecedented heat extremes in 15% of sub Saharan Africa's land area;

•             the percentage of Africa's population already experiencing high water stress is 25% (Lake Chad is estimated to have shrunk by as much as 95%);

•             about 250 million people in Africa are at risk of increased water stress by 2020.

 

 

Climate change has become the greatest threat to sustainable development. Therefore, the success of the adopted SDGs will mostly depend on the success of Paris negotiations (COP21).

ADNE urges African negotiators at the COP 21 to approach the process with one voice and make Africa’s survival their foremost priority.

Climate change entails also forced migration:

 Every year, around the world, millions of people are forcibly displaced by floods, wind-storms, earthquakes, droughts and other disasters. These movements are likely to increase. National and international responses to this challenge are insufficient and protection for affected people remains inadequate. If no significant action is taken, climate change will lead the world to disaster and chaos. There is a need for a multilateral process to address the challenges of cross-border displacement in the context of the effects of climate change.

The COP21 create the momentum for governments to agree on how to speed up the transition towards low-carbon economies while increasing the pace of efforts towards the global zero-carbon. The Paris Agreement must provide an unambiguous signal of commitment of all international actors to end the fossil fuels era.

The COP21 has to deliver global solidarity and ensure that polluters pay for the damage they cause by strengthening developing countries capacities for adaptation and resilience to Climate Change.

The upcoming agreement has to be the turning point towards sustainable green economies by providing the means for improving national climate actions and defining common measures and legal instruments to address climate change that have to be reached by all countries without exception.

A transition towards inclusive green economies in developing countries, mainly in Africa, represents an opportunity to tackle poverty, foster the development of clean sustainable technology and renewable energy, create employment and improve the overall well-being of populations.

The COP21 has to lead to a binding and meaningful climate agreement and provide needed financing means that will help to build a better future for our earth and its ecosystems. Financing for Climate change is taking responsibility, it is about justice, humanity and solidarity.

ADNE firmly requests the world leaders to be more ambitious and take strong measures that are compatible with the level of danger that Climate change represents to human health and survival of the human race. It is the future of the planet and of our children and future generation that is at stake.