Climate Summit 2019: African Heads of States sound the alarm and urge developed countries to get serious about supporting efforts of African countries
RFI-Climate: double jeopardy, complain the African Heads of State
The Climate Summit convened by the UN Secretary General in New York provided an opportunity for the African Heads of State to showcase their climate change policies. And also send out a warning that the least developed countries are also the most at-risk and are often left to deal with the harmful effects of climate change on their own.
In summary, the African Heads of State who took the floor on Monday in New York presented similar reports. They each presented a list of steps taken: here, to preserve or expand forests like the DRC, Gabon, Ethiopia or Congo-Brazzaville, for instance ; there, short or medium term plans to phase out diesel or coal-fueled power plants and fast-track the transition towards clean energy in the next ten or twenty years like Djibouti, the Seychelles or Nigeria.
But all of them, like the President of Sierra Leone, were clear on one thing: the poorest countries are also the most at-risk. And Africa is on the front line. The President of Djibouti remarked on the foreseeable submersion of his capital city in a few dozen years. While the Chadian President talked of the deadly consequences of the deterioration of Lake Chad for the entire region in recent years.
The African speakers were thus of the same mind- as they bear the full brunt of the catastrophic effects of climate change, their countries will not make it without help on the one hand. And on the other hand, if the richest countries do not keep the promises of the Paris Agreement.