The Africa Climate Summit: What is at stake
The reality of climate change is no longer a distant concern; it is now a pressing global crisis that requires immediate attention. The Africa Climate Summit 2023 (ACS23), which will take place from September 4 to 6 at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre in Nairobi, is a significant milestone in Africa's efforts to combat climate change. ACS23 aims to bring together nations, organisations and individuals with a shared objective: to promote green growth and climate finance solutions for Africa and the rest of the world. ACS23 comes on the backdrop of increasing environmental instability. In the last 10 years, there has been a sharp increase in extreme weather events that have caused significant damage to economies all over the world. However, Africa is disproportionately affected by these climatic upheavals. Droughts, desertification and cyclones are constantly threatening food security, forcing migration and contributing to economic instability. The challenges are further compounded by rising global temperatures, which require urgent and coordinated action. ACS23 aims to go beyond the traditional division between the North and South by promoting worldwide cooperation. Africa is not just a sufferer of climate change, but a key participant in addressing it. The continent possesses abundant resources, including renewable energy sources, crucial minerals and agricultural potential. These resources serve as the foundation for Africa to develop its green growth path. By utilising its natural resources, Africa can promote sustainable development while also contributing to the global shift towards renewable energy. To tackle climate change, a significant amount of funding is required and this is where ACS23's thematic areas come in. The summit has identified three key climate finance goals that are interlinked: increasing financing, targeted financing, and cheaper financing with a higher risk appetite. To achieve these goals, ACS23 suggests implementing global taxes, eliminating fossil fuel subsidies and utilising mechanisms such as Carbon Border Adjustment. The aim is to establish a comprehensive funding mechanism that will expedite climate action. Climate action requires collaboration between various groups such as governments, private companies, civil society, philanthropic organisations and local communities. Private investments and philanthropic support can provide funding and encourage new ideas. Civil society, including women and youth, can ensure accountability and a science-driven approach. The perspectives of indigenous communities are crucial for fair and sustainable development. The ACS23 summit is a platform for leaders to commit to taking action against climate change. It serves as a guide for establishing targets and deadlines. This summit is an opportunity to demonstrate dedication to a sustainable future and a call to action for collective efforts. The goal is to drive green growth and climate finance solutions for a lasting impact. It calls on Africa and the world to address the pressing challenge of protecting our planet for future generations.