By Godwin Oritse reporting from Addis Ababa
NIGERIA and 52 other African countries have pledged to commit a total of $4trillion in investments by the year 2030 to fight the adverse economic impact of climate change in the African continent.
Disclosing this at the opening ceremony of the 8th Conference on Climate Change Development in Africa in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Anthony Nyong, Director, Climate Change and Green Growth Department of the African Development Bank, said that the threat of climate change to the progress of economic prosperity in Africa looms larger than ever.
Nyong said that the prevalence of climate-related disasters is unrelenting adding that about 180million people across the continent have been affected while a whopping $22 billion have been lost to the effect of climate change.
He explained that the conference presents an opportunity for banks to contribute to policies and actions that will mobilize the financial resources needed to support long-term investments in resilience to low carbon development.
Explaining further, Nyong said that weather and climate-related disasters have the potential to cripple economic growth across Africa adding that the greatest impacts are already being felt in the most vulnerable sectors.
He said: “Our first urgent action is to build the resilience and adaptation to the adverse impacts of climate change for the most vulnerable communities across Africa.
“Nigeria having signed the and rectified the Paris Agreement, nearly all African countries are now committed to Climate Action in support of building resilience through early warning system, comprehensive risk assessment and management and risk insurance.
“The time is now, to translate the agreement into concrete action, to safeguard development gain and address the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable.
“We must be resolute in our effort to find solutions and we must be at the centre of the solution.’’
Earlier in her remarks, Ms Aida Opoku Mensah, Chief of Staff, United Nation European Commission Africa, UNECA, said that the meeting will strengthen Africa’s position and participation in international climate change negotiations.