NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
A three-day pan African conference kicked off in
Nairobi on Wednesday to explore new ways to boost climate
resilience in a continent suffering from the negative impacts of
rising atmospheric temperatures.
Keriako Tobiko, cabinet secretary for environment and natural
resources who opened the 7th conference on climate
change and development in Africa (CCDA-V11), called for
increased financing, technology transfer and capacity
development to shield rural communities from climatic shocks.
“Climate change presents one of the most existential threats to
Africa’s survival and progress. It has impacted negatively on
our economies and entire livelihoods,” said Tobiko.
“We must strengthen our commitment and collective engagement
towards combating the negative consequences of climate change
that include severe food and water shortages,” he added.
More than 700 delegates who included lawmakers, policymakers,
researchers and grassroots campaigners are attending the
three-day pan-African conference to inject fresh vitality in the
fight against climate change.
Representatives of multilateral lenders and regional blocs are
also attending the summit that is expected to come up with a new
master-plan to revitalize climate change response in Africa.
Tobiko said that African countries should focus on innovative
financing and robust community engagement to ensure that climate
change adaptation and mitigation projects are successfully
The minister noted that climate change presents an opportunity
for African countries to invest in green technologies and
accelerate their low carbon development.
“Committed leadership and green investments will put our
continent on solid low carbon development pathways,” said Tobiko.
African countries have embarked on dialogue to harmonize
policies aimed at supporting high impact interventions to boost
Olushola Olayide, a senior policy officer at the African Union
Commission (AUC), said that experience sharing coupled with
knowledge and skills transfer is key to boost climate resilience
in a continent already reeling from extreme weather events.
“We must speak with one voice and share lessons on the best
practices that should be adopted to help local communities cope
with natural disasters triggered by warming of the planet,” said
James Kinyangi, the Chief Climate Policy Officer at the African
Development Bank (AFDB), said that mobilizing domestic resources
as opposed to over-reliance on foreign donors is key to sustain
green investments that will promote climate resilience while
generating new jobs for African youth.
“African countries require targeted investments to accelerate
transition to low carbon emission development pathway and bold
actions from political leadership is key to realize that
objective,” said Kinyangi.
Pan-African lobby groups have rallied behind community-led
interventions that have proved effective in minimizing harm to
livelihoods and ecosystems as a result of climatic shocks.
Mithika Mwenda, the secretary general of Pan-African Climate
Justice Alliance (PACJA), said that financial and technical
support for local communities is key to realize the success of
climate resilience programs.