His Excellency President Luiz Lula da Silva of Brazil who was on a state visit to Tanzania has argued Africa to form a common position and hold accountable highest polluters to pay the cost for global warming or else risk the extreme effects of Climate Change. He went further and said that it is wrong to continue pushing Africa to undermine their plans for development of alternative energy sources (e.g. agro-fuels). “You should go to Mexico with a common stand and tell the big polluters to pay the cost of the environmental pollution”. He stressed! This is a great support from one of the emerging and influential big economies countries. Africa has to speed up its common position/strategy on the issue of Climate Change and Global Warming on the coming UNFCC meeting which will be held on Mexico in the coming December 2010. So what to do?
It was decided by the conference that scientific findings on Climate Change in Africa should be submitted to the African political leaders to enable them to adequately negotiate at the forthcoming UNFCCC Summit in Mexico in December 2010 from a better informed and united position. This came from a review of the Copenhagen Summit held in December 2009 where the negotiations failed to get an agreement. It was noted that in Copenhagen, the political and scientific components from Africa were not working together. It was apparent that the two were negotiating in parallel. Consequently, the African scientists are duty-bound to present to the African Heads of State and Government the acquired data and knowledge on the Science of Climate Change, projections of realistic future climate scenarios, with projected impacts in, and attendant implications, over Africa.
I would like to kindly urge NASAC (Network of African Science Academies) by mid-July 2010 in consultation with other African scientists, ECA and AUC, to speed up the preparation of the 2-page Statement on Climate Change in Africa. The issue of provision of Climate Change funds and Africa’s accessibility to the Climate Change funds should be addressed in the prepared statement. Also summary of the Conference Proceedings (ECA-AU SWA II, June 2010) should be disseminates as soon as possible and we have to see to it (conference document) that it reaches all the intended destinations (governments) in Africa. A follow up is essential. NASAC, ECA and AUC should distribute the prepared 2-page Statement on Climate Change in Africa to the African governments through senior government officials for their ingestion and appropriate submission to their respective ministers, for their consumption and incorporation before heading to Mexico in December 2010. Long-term initiatives on the Science of Climate Change, Mitigation and Adaptation, and growth of sustainable green economies in Africa will be jointly coordinated by ECA and AUC in collaboration with their regional (Africa) partners. An establishment of an ECA-AU hosted Pan-African Green Technology and Innovation Centre is envisaged.
Note: This article is the result of the conversation we made with the formerly Director of ICSU-South Africa and Rapporteur of ECA-AU SWA II, June 2010, Professor Sospeter Muhongo regarding to the comments of President of Brazil on Climate change.
Stephen J Nyagonde
Young Earth Scientist Network- Tanzania,
Internship WWF Tanzania Office,
Rubeho Environmental Action Project-REAP,
Tanzania Forest Conservation Group (TFCG),
Rubeho, Mpwapwa, Dodoma,
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