Africa: Climate Crisis Threatens Continent’s Development – Kagame

Climate crisis is a threat to Africa’s development, President Paul Kagame has said, but stressed that all hope is not lost because the continent is rich in renewable energy sources which makes Africa pivotal in the search for climate solutions.

Kagame said this while virtually addressing the 4th edition of Kusi Ideas Festival on December 8, themed “Climate Change: Exploring African Responses and Solutions.”

The Kusi Ideas Festival is a pan-African platform that aims to examine Africa’s place in the world, its citizen’s problem-solving ideas and innovations, as well as how they prepare the path in dealing with the coming challenges.

“Climate change is a global phenomenon but the science is very clear that Africa is disproportionately affected by its impacts,” Kagame said.

However, he highlighted that there is hope in Africa’s potential in providing renewable energy sources on top of being home to talented and dedicated youth spearheading initiatives aimed at building more climate-resilient communities.

He added: “We have a shared vision for a more sustainable and resilient Africa, as outlined in the agenda 2063. Unfortunately, a major hurdle continues to be climate finance.”

It is estimated that Africa needs about $1.6 trillion to address climate change annually from 2020 to 2030, however it only gets three per cent of the total global climate finance.

“Big emitters must pay their dues, but also need to be serious about mobilizing greater domestic resources,” Kagame emphasized.

He gave a case of Rwanda, where a green fund was established to support public and private projects and drive the country’s green economy.

During COP27, Rwanda launched a green investment facility worth $104 million (approx. Rwf109 billion) in its first capitalization that will be directed to green projects in the form of blended finance such as debt, credit enhancements such as sub-debt, tenor extension, and collateral support.

Rwanda seeks to reduce carbon emissions by 38 percent in 2030.

The Head of State also noted that the continent is faced with food and energy crises deepened by the pandemic and the geopolitical Nations.

“This is yet another blow to Africa’s fragile economies…what Africa needs now is result-oriented partnerships within and outside the continent to translate our ambitions into prosperity for all.”

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