By Imali Ngusale
We are only 16 days shy from the African Climate Week set to take place from the 4th to 8th of September 2023. The event will be held in parallel with the African Climate Summit which will take place on the 4th to 6th of September 2023.
15 Heads of State and over 13,000 delegates from 136 states have confirmed their attendance.
Following this development, the African Union in partnership with the Kenyan government’s Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Forestry organized a press briefing to update the continent on the ongoing plans.
Over 120 Africa journalists attended the press briefing that was held in Addis Ababa Ethiopia on the 16th of August 2023.
Speaking during the press brief, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Forestry, Soipan Tuya said, “We are pleased to host the inaugural Africa Climate Summit in Kenya, this coming September”.
The summit comes at a time when the Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG) have reached an unequivocal all-time high of 1.2 °C.
The 2023 IPCC report confirms that African States remain highly vulnerable to climate change and continue to be disproportionately impacted by substantial damages, and irreversible losses caused by the GHG emissions.
“The international meetings on climate change have done very little to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that are rising by the day,” said Soipan Tuya.
This notwithstanding Soipan lauded that the African Climate Summit will not be a forum for “blame games” but a forum for partnership sessions for “real African solutions”.
Soipan insisted that Africa Climate Week has been planned to show solutions Africa can give to the world.
She also urged the world to bring to Africa capital that matches the scale of the climate crisis.
It is worth noting that climate change has caused substantial damage in Africa’s terrestrial, freshwater, cryospheric, coastal, and open ocean ecosystems.
The irreversible losses Africa has experienced provoked the African Union to spearhead discussions that will deliberate on sustainable solutions
“It is time Africa became the solution provider to global problems as opposed to being perceived as a vulnerable continent awaiting solutions from the West,” said Soipan.
Lauding the same view H.E ambassador Josefa, Commissioner for Agriculture, Rural Development Blue Economy and Sustainable Environment, said “Africa should embark on sustainable policies.”
Soipan lauded that Africa is committed to limiting emissions while contributing significantly to the global reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
She also stated that the Kenyan government has held pre-summit activities with Civil Society organizations, the youth, and the media and has a fully-fledged secretariat that will ascertain inclusion in the upcoming summit.
She also emphasized that the Africa Climate Summit resolutions will also be featured in this year’s 78th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 78) in New York and COP28 which is set to take place in Dubai.