During a virtual conference held recently in Abuja, stakeholders of Green Growth Africa emphasized the importance of developed countries renewing their $100 billion pledges for the Climate Fund, as agreed upon in COP21.
They stressed that this financial commitment should be in addition to the pledges made for the Adaptation Fund in COP26 and the recently agreed-upon loss and damage fund in COP27.
Dr. Adedoyin Adeleke, the Executive Director of Green Growth Africa, highlighted the necessity of mobilizing these funds for multidimensional and multi-sectoral strategic interventions aimed at promoting green growth.
In his analysis, he emphasized the importance of African youth gaining expertise in green skills and receiving support to establish medium and large-sized green enterprises that promote social and economic progress.
He further suggested that by investing in capital-intensive adaptation projects, developed countries can form productive, effective, and efficient partnerships with African nations to develop sustainable solutions that benefit not only Africa but also significantly assist the developed nations.
Despite being responsible for only 3% of global greenhouse gas emissions, Adeleke highlighted that Africa faces an uneven vulnerability to the consequences of climate change.
“The continent faces escalating climate-related extreme weather disasters, including floods, extreme heat, erratic rainfall, and rising sea levels, causing untold human suffering and economic disruption,” he said.
As he discussed the interconnected climate challenges, he emphasized that Africa should seek climate solutions that simultaneously tackle urgent socio-economic issues.
“Africa needs innovative climate solutions that can enable the continent to be more resilient to climate disasters while maximising the economic benefits of the global green transition – Green Growth,” he noted.
Furthermore, he emphasized that by equipping young people with green skills and facilitating financial assistance for the establishment of new enterprises, Africa will become a global leader in combating climate change.
He also advocated for the development of domestic industries that can convert Africa’s abundant reserves of lithium, a valuable mineral, into batteries for electric vehicles. This approach would be more beneficial than outsourcing the establishment of such industries to other regions and exploiting Africa’s mineral resources.
“This highlights the critical theme of the 2023 International Youth Day, “Green Skills for Youth: Towards a Sustainable World.” Africa needs to aggressively arm its youth with Green Skills to leverage their enthusiasm, resilience, and exploratory spirit.
“This is the pathway to develop new medium and large green industries in Africa. We must emphasize here that Africa cannot afford to depend on other nations for green technologies. We must develop here in the soil of Africa globally competitive green technologies if climate action must yield social and economic gain on the continent,” Adeleke said.