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UN is fighting for climate justice, Guterres assures Africa

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United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres

United Nations has reiterated its commitment to fighting for climate justice.

In a press briefing, United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres urged all African governments to create ambitious new national climate plans by next year – 2025.

Guterres who was speaking during the United Nations’ Civil Society Conference in Nairobi Friday, advised African governments to create plans that drive sustainable development, attract investment, and align with limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius to avoid the worst of climate chaos.  

“Our new Panel on Critical Energy Transition Minerals co-chaired by Ambassador Nozipho Joyce Mxakato-Diseko of South Africa will develop voluntary principles to ensure developing countries receive maximum benefit.” Said Guterres.

He said civil society is central to the Summit’s aims of advancing sustainable development, unlocking finance and reshaping multilateralism for the 21st century.

While lauding the participation of young African people at the conference, he regretted that Africa is being blasted by extreme weather, turbocharged by a climate crisis it has done next to nothing to create ranging from lethal floods in the East, to deadly droughts in the South.

“Africa could be a renewables giant. It is home to 30pc of the minerals critical to renewables, and 60pc of the world’s best solar resources. Yet, in this unfair world, in recent decades, it received just two percent of the investments in  renewables. ” He noted.

Guterres noted that too often, countries and communities with critical energy transition minerals are exploited, and relegated to the bottom of the value chain while others take the profits. 

He called for developed countries to honour their promises on climate finance including funding to help countries prepare for the worst of climate chaos; for significant contributions to the new Loss and Damage Fund, for action to reform the multilateral development banks so that finance flows to climate action.

As well as for the G20 to lead efforts to slash emissions and accelerate a just global phase-out of fossil fuels.

Similarly, the United Nations Secretary General also asked African leaders to support these efforts.

This coming as Kenya is recovering from devastating floods that ravaged the country in the last few months following heavy down pour during the the long rains killing over 200 people and displacing thousands.

While he extended his condolences to all those affected by the floods Guterres reiterated the United Nations support saying UN is standing in solidarity with the Kenyan people.

“And we will continue working hand-in-hand to support government relief efforts in any way that we can.” He said.

Loss and Damage 

Loss and damage refers to the negative effects of climate change that occur despite mitigation and adaptation efforts. While mitigation addresses the causes of climate change (like reducing greenhouse gas emissions) and adaptation addresses its impacts (like building sea walls to prevent flooding), loss and damage is concerned with the unavoidable and irreversible impacts of the climate crisis.

 

Also read https://www.kbc.co.ke/floods-update-death-toll-rises-to-257-44-cholera-cases-reported/

https://www.kbc.co.ke/pacja-african-countries-urged-to-prioritise-climate-adaptation-mitigation-to-reduce-loss-and-damage/

https://www.kbc.co.ke/honour-loss-and-damage-fund-pledges-developed-countries-urged/

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