Implementation of the Paris Agreement to be discussed at a UN conference in Addis
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12 October 2016
Author :   Friday Phiri
President Edgar Lungu of Zambia signing the Paris Agreement : >> Image Credits by:Friday Phiri

With less than a month before the annual climate change conference slated for Morocco, African Climate Experts are expected to meet in Addis Ababa Ethiopia from 18-20 October, to brainstorm what next for Africa after the Paris Agreement.

Convened under the auspices of the Climate for Development in Africa (ClimDev-Africa) Programme, the Sixth Conference on Climate Change and Development in Africa (CCDA–VI), is set to discuss, in the African context, nuances, challenges and opportunities of implementing the Paris Agreement.

According to James Murombedzi, Officer –in-Charge at the Africa Climate Policy Centre, “The Paris Agreement heralds bold steps towards decarbonizing the global economy and reducing dependency on fossil fuels.”

But of utter most importance for Africa is to understand the implications of the Paris Agreement especially with regards to means of implementation ( Technology transfer and finance), an issue that has never escaped the minds of the African Group of Negotiators, and this is a point that Murombedzi emphasizes for the stakeholders at the upcoming conference.

“However, there are contentious nuances of the agreement that must be unpacked in the context of Africa’s development priorities, particularly in regard to the means of implementation which were binding provisions of the Kyoto Protocol and currently only non-binding decisions in the Paris Agreement,” said Murombedzi, pointing out the need for Africa not to lose focus on what matters in the implementation stage of the Agreement.

The Paris Agreement on climate change, set to come into effect before the end of the year,  aims to limit the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue more ambitious efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels in this century.

The basis of the Paris Agreement is the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC) submitted by all parties in the lead up to COP21 as their national contributions to limiting global greenhouse gas emissions. INDCs became Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) subsequent to COP21.

Implementation of the Agreement has significant implications for Africa as the continent that will be most severely impacted by the adverse impacts of weather variability and climate change. The continent is already experiencing climate-induced impacts, such as frequent and prolonged droughts and floods, as well as environmental degradation that make livelihoods difficult for rural and urban communities. Increasing migration on the continent is both triggered and amplified by climate change.

Therefore, under the main theme: “The Paris Agreement on climate change: What next for Africa?” CCDA VI is about a critical and contextual analysis of what is at stake for Africa and what the Agreement offers, prior to COP22, in order to contribute to the strategic orientation for African countries in moving forward with the implementation of the Agreement.

And to better articulate the specific objectives and capture the implications of implementing the Paris Agreement for inclusive and sustainable development in Africa, the Conference will be organized under the following sub-themes: Unpacking the Paris Agreement and emerging challenges and opportunities for Africa; Integration of the Paris Agreement into Africa’s development agenda and other global governance frameworks; Linking African initiatives to the implementation of the Paris Agreement; and Emerging challenges from climate change.

CCDA-VI is expected to be attended by policymakers and researchers, young people, civil society organizations, negotiators and the private sector, CCDA-VI will facilitate and enrich the sharing of lessons, key research findings, outreach and policy uptake, as well as stimulate investments.



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