West African countries agree on climate strategy

West African countries have come together and made the fight against climate change a common challenge. A common strategy for the year 2030 was therefore set by the eleven member countries of ECOWAS - the Economic Community of West African States - on 30 April 2020.

In order to enable the region's development while minimising greenhouse gas emissions, the ECOWAS Commissioner for agriculture, environment, and water resources said at a press briefing that about $294 billion will be invested between now and 2030.

These significant investments will allow for better weather forecasting to prevent costly natural disasters in the region, as well as boost the agricultural sector. It would also improve grain storage techniques to cope with the region's increasingly frequent droughts, and preserve the forests and the carbon stock they represent for ECOWAS member states.

More than a billion people will live in West Africa in 2050, compared to 400 million today, and the region is expected to experience a temperature increase - between 2 and 6 °C by the end of the century - higher than the global average. This rise in temperature, the frequent droughts that threaten agricultural soils, and the shrinking coastline due to rising sea levels are likely to cause a flow of migration within the region from coastal communities.

The World Bank, in a report published in 2021, estimates this climate migration at 32 million people by 2050.

Commitments have already been made. ECOWAS, for example, plans to increase the share of renewable energies to around 50% of the energy mix by 2030. All ECOWAS countries are also parties to the Paris Agreement, signed in 2015.

For a region that accounts for only 1.8% of global CO2 emissions, achieving the targets set also depends greatly on its access to international financing, such as the Green Climate Fund. A regional union will facilitate access to this type of financing, as the ECOWAS Investment and Development Bank has the technical capacity for this partnership, unlike some of the region's poorest countries.

Sources : CommonSpace.eu with Le Monde (Paris), Africa News (Lyon) and other media outlets
Picture: The fifteen Ministers of Environment of ECOWAS Member States at the ECOWAS Regional Climate Strategy conference; Twitter: @ecowas_cedeao

 

Related articles

Editor's choice
News
Borrell tells the European Parliament that the situation in Afghanistan was critical, but the EU will remain engaged

Borrell tells the European Parliament that the situation in Afghanistan was critical, but the EU will remain engaged

Borrell underlined that the European Union will make every effort to support the peace process and to remain a committed partner to the Afghan people. "Of course, we will have to take into account the evolving situation, but disengagement is not an option.  We are clear on that: there is no alternative to a negotiated political settlement, through inclusive peace talks.
Editor's choice
News
Turkey holds delicate talks with Sweden and Finland ahead of a decision on their NATO membership application

Turkey holds delicate talks with Sweden and Finland ahead of a decision on their NATO membership application

Senior Turkish officials have met with government delegations from Sweden and Finland as discussions continue following Ankara's threat to veto the NATO membership application of the two Nordic countries. Most NATO countries have warmly welcomed the decision of Sweden and Finland since their membership in NATO will considerably strengthen the northern flank of the alliance, but Turkey accuses both countries of having an ambivalent position on Turkey's struggle with militant Kurdish groups. On Wednesday, Swedish and Finnish government delegations travelled to Ankara to meet with Turkish representatives in an effort to resolve the country’s doubts regarding their accession to NATO. In their first face-to-face meeting since the two Nordic countries applied for membership, Turkish representatives stressed their security concerns, and conditions regarding Sweden’s “cooperation” with Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). Turkish presidential spokesperson Ibrahim Kalin said in a statement late on Wednesday that positive steps towards the lifting of an arms embargo from Finland and Sweden had been taken. In October of 2019, Sweden and Finland were among some  European states that imposed an arms embargo on Turkey following a military incursion into Syria.

Popular

Editor's choice
News
Turkey holds delicate talks with Sweden and Finland ahead of a decision on their NATO membership application

Turkey holds delicate talks with Sweden and Finland ahead of a decision on their NATO membership application

Senior Turkish officials have met with government delegations from Sweden and Finland as discussions continue following Ankara's threat to veto the NATO membership application of the two Nordic countries. Most NATO countries have warmly welcomed the decision of Sweden and Finland since their membership in NATO will considerably strengthen the northern flank of the alliance, but Turkey accuses both countries of having an ambivalent position on Turkey's struggle with militant Kurdish groups. On Wednesday, Swedish and Finnish government delegations travelled to Ankara to meet with Turkish representatives in an effort to resolve the country’s doubts regarding their accession to NATO. In their first face-to-face meeting since the two Nordic countries applied for membership, Turkish representatives stressed their security concerns, and conditions regarding Sweden’s “cooperation” with Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). Turkish presidential spokesperson Ibrahim Kalin said in a statement late on Wednesday that positive steps towards the lifting of an arms embargo from Finland and Sweden had been taken. In October of 2019, Sweden and Finland were among some  European states that imposed an arms embargo on Turkey following a military incursion into Syria.