AfDB governors call for more climate finance

28 May, 2023 - 00:05 0 Views
AfDB governors call for more climate finance

The Sunday Mail

Africa Moyo in SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt

MORE funds should be sourced to deal with the rising cases of extreme weather events exacerbated by climate change and natural disasters, governors representing member countries of the African Development Bank (AfDB) and state participants of the African Development Fund (ADF) have said.

They said this in a communique released on Friday at the end of the 58th annual meeting of the board of governors of the AfDB and the 49th annual meeting of the board of governors of the ADF.

President Mnangagwa and several other Heads of State and Government attended the opening ceremony of the annual meetings on Tuesday.

Issues of climate change came to the fore at the annual meetings, in line with the theme “Mobilising private sector financing for climate and green growth in Africa”.

Africa and other developing countries are bearing the brunt of climate change. The phenomenon has led to deaths, damaged infrastructure and poor harvests due to erratic rains.

The most recent case cited by the board of governors was Cyclone Freddy, which killed over 1 300 people in Malawi and Mozambique, displaced thousands of people and destroyed infrastructure worth thousands of dollars in those countries.

In Zimbabwe, Freddy damaged crops in the Lowveld and some houses in Manicaland, especially in Nyanga.

Hundreds of people were also killed in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo recently following heavy floods.

Said the governors: “We stress the need for substantial financial resources to support climate adaptation in Africa, including delivery on the developed countries’ commitment to mobilise US$100 billion per year in climate finance for developing countries, in the context of meaningful mitigation actions and transparency on implementation.

“In that vein, we call for urgent action to double the collective provision of climate finance for adaptation, and operationalisation of new funding arrangements to respond to loss and damage as per decisions of the Conferences of the of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Conference of the Parties to the Paris Agreement, the last sessions of which were held in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.”

At COP 27, wealthy nations agreed to set up a loss and damage fund to help poor countries when they are affected by climate change disasters.

However, nothing has materialised since last November, and preliminary engagements are only expected to begin this week to see how the fund can be structured.

The governors applauded the AfDB for its leadership on climate financing in Africa, exceeding its target to commit 40 percent to climate finance, achieving 45 percent in 2022 and devoting 63 percent of its climate finance in 2022 to adaptation.

This has resulted in the AfDB being the leading multilateral development bank globally on adaptation finance to have exceeded the 50:50 target for adaptation and mitigation, while devoting 87 percent of its investments in energy generation to renewable energy since the launch of the Bank Group’s New Deal on Energy for Africa strategy in 2016.

“We encourage the Bank Group to continue to adopt approaches that ensure a just transition, energy security and sustainability, in line with the Paris Agreement; expand access to clean, renewable, affordable, reliable and sustainable energy services for all; and stimulate low-carbon and climate-resilient development, in line with the Paris Agreement,” said the governors.

They encouraged the AfDB to deepen its collaboration with the African Union, other multilateral development banks, international financial institutions and other development partners to mobilise more public and private climate financing for green and sustainable investments, and to actively participate in Africa’s Just Energy Transition Partnerships, including more concessional resources to ensure that the transition is just.

“We urge partners to drive efforts to close the continent’s annual climate financing gap of approximately US$213,4 billion,” reads the communique.

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