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Wb turn down heat- week5-final project-fgo


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Subject: Climate Change in Sub Sahara Africa: Evidences, Scenarios and Actions for Policy Makers
I have been moved to write about the above subject after the first peer review assignment when I interviewed a senior energy specialist who was on a business trip to Washington. I was shocked and disappointed that such a high level staff did not believe in any anthropogenic influence in climate change and think that even if it was the case, only developed countries have to take care of reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. The main objective of this presentation is to bring scientific and factual evidences that indeed climate change is not a fairy tale but a deadly phenomenon that affects the whole world and particularly poor countries in SSA. The presentation also brings out few initiatives taken by some countries in SSA not only to show examples for other countries to follow but also bring their attention on the fact that more actions need to be done in SSA to mitigate, adapt and build resilient countries. Actions need to be taken now, together and differently! Enjoy the reading

Published in: Environment
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Wb turn down heat- week5-final project-fgo

  1. 1. Climate Change in Sub Sahara Africa(SSA): Evidences, Scenarios and Actions for Policy Makers By Fatimata Gaba Ouedraogo
  2. 2. Climate change is happening in SSA and is affecting its growing population: Evidences, scenarios and actions Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is a rapidly developing region of over 800 million people, with 49 countries, and great ecological, climatic and cultural diversity. Its population for 2050 is projected to approach 1.5 billion people.
  3. 3. Scientific truths about climate changes 1/2 1. Global warming is real and humans are 95% likely the responsible 2. Global mean warming has risen by 0.8°C above pre industrial level 3. Sea level raised by 20 cm from pre industrial times to 2009 4. Data for NASA of 2012 has shown that an estimated 97% of Greenland ice sheet has thawed Some of the consequences have been flooding of arable areas and increase water borne diseases
  4. 4. Scientific truths about climate changes 2/2 1. CO2 concentration has increased by 40% since 1700, because of Co2 emissions due to anthropogenic sources. 2. The pH of oceans decreases when it absorb CO2 which leads to ocean acidification with grave consequences on ocean life Agriculture, livestock, marine ecosystem, and humans have been negatively affected
  5. 5. Sub Saharan Africa is not spared 1. Atmospheric greenhouse gases like Co2 prevent heat radiation from escaping into space thus increasing the earth surface temperature. Tropical and subtropical eco regions in SSA are particularly vulnerable to ecosystem damage. For instance, in a 2-3 degree warmer world, 25-40% of known plant species are likely to face increased risk of extinction 2. If humans continue business as usual the world is on a critical path toward a 2°C warming by 2050 and a 4° C warming by 2100. In SSA unprecedented heat extremes are projected over an increasing percentage of land area as warming goes from 2 to 4°C, resulting in significant changes in vegetative cover and species at risk of extinction.
  6. 6. Current and forthcoming consequences of global warming in SSA :1/4 Heat has increased 1. As temperature rises increase at about 7% per degree of warming, wet areas will become wetter and dry areas will tend to get dryer. Africa except some part in Northeast will become drier. 2. Increased drought: 60% of snow areas in Africa could be affected by drought by 2100 in a 4° warmer world. The large affected snow areas are in Africa and Oceania 3. East Africa has experienced a trend towards increased drought frequencies since the 1970s, which are at least partly attributable to greenhouse gas forcing (Funk 2012),
  7. 7. Current and forthcoming consequences of global warming in SSA :2/4 Food Security has been affected 1. Sub-Saharan Africa is particularly dependent on agriculture for food, income, and employment, almost all of it rain-fed. Global warming shifts the climatic conditions that are conducive to current agricultural production. 2. Coral reefs are very sensitive to water temperature and ocean pH and may stop growing as warming reached 1.4°C. Around 500 millions people in the world including Sub Saharan Africa are dependent on coral reef in some ways 3. Agriculture and particularly maize yield will be affected: there is a High sensitivity to crops to temperature exceeding 30 degree. Each 1° will affect 65% of maize yield in Africa. 4. The annual average temperature is already above optimal values for wheat during the growing season over much of the Sub-Saharan Africa 5. Since the 1980s, global crop production has been negatively affected by climate trends, with maize and wheat production declining by 3.8 percent and 5.5 percent, respectively, compared to a model simulation without climate trends. Lobell et al. 2011
  8. 8. Current and forthcoming consequences of global warming in SSA: 3/4 The economy is negatively affected 1. SSA region is more vulnerable to Climate change than developed countries and most of the population rely on natural resources for subsistence 2. The economic growth rate has reduced and will continue so if we do not change the way we act. Historical data from 1950 to 2003 has shown a negative effect of higher temperature on economic growth in poor countries like SSA. 3. Zambia has lost 10.8 billion dollars accounting for 4% of GDP through climate droughts and flood. 300,000 people have been plunged into the poverty trap 4. Pastoralists in southern Ethiopia lost nearly 50 percent of their cattle and about 40 percent of their sheep and goats to droughts between 1995 and 1997 .
  9. 9. Current and forthcoming consequences of global warming in SSA :4/4 Poverty could further increase 1. Human health is affected: Lost of productivity link to climate related death. By reducing black carbon and methane emissions (short lived gases in atmosphere) and dangerous to human health, 2.4 million /year pollution related death and 32 millions tons of crop loss per year can be prevented by 2030 2. Poverty could significantly increase: The population of undernourished population could increase by 25-90% with a warming of 1.2-1.9° by 2050 3. In 2012-213 countries in SSA like Tanzania, Nigeria, Niger and Chad experienced severe flooding because of unusually active monsoon season
  10. 10. There is a need of urgent action now to mitigate, adapt and build resilience to climate change. SSA needs also to act together with the global community. SSA needs to act differently. Are we there yet?
  11. 11. Current action taken to reduce climate warming : 1/3 Case of South Africa 1. Draft of the National Climate Change Response White Paper which outlines the policies, principles and strategies the country will use to respond to climate change. 2. South Africa has committed to emissions trajectory that peaks at 34% below “ business as usual” in 2020 and 40% in 2025
  12. 12. Current action taken to reduce climate warming in SSA: 2/3 Case of Zambia: 1. Mainstreaming of the climate change adaptation and mitigation processes into the budget 2. Development of a climate response strategy paper in 2010. The National Climate Change Response Strategy aims to make the country climate resilient and help fulfill the development priorities as listed under the National Long Term Vision 2030. 3. Establishment of Zambia climate change committee including civil society to oversee the activities related to climate change 4. Commits within a decade 25% of the budget toward climate change activities .
  13. 13. Current action taken to reduce climate warming in SSA: 3/3 Benin and Burkina Faso: an example with poorest populations in those countries In Benin and Burkina Faso some initiatives have been taken to reduce deforestation. For example by working with the villagers to develop honey production from the forest. the later became defender of deforestation because it is a good financial source. .
  14. 14. Is SSA acting differently? While some actions have been taken to act now and build resilience, the renewable energy market is not fully tapped for energy access. Fossil fuel remains the dominant source for electricity generation but SSA needs to move towards a cleaner energy path. For this, SSA must: • Promote, as much as possible, the best affordable clean and efficient technologies available • Introduce economically viable cleaner technologies by increasing the sustainable use of renewable energy sources where the potential exists, (ii) fostering energy efficiency and (iii) adopting cleaner technologies. • Adopt appropriate policies and put in place targeted subsidies to foster introduction of cleaner technologies.
  15. 15. BUT ACTIONS IN THE ENERGY SECTOR ONLY ARE NOT SUFFICIENT! For the actions to be really effective at the national, regional and global levels, other sectors such as Agriculture, Transport, Industry need to adopt policies and implement climate-smart projects like 1. Develop strategies to halt deforestation 2. Use land efficiently and introduction of climate friendly technology for agriculture 3. Efficient usage of water 4. Find innovative ways to engage the population at an individual and community level for better results. Each person has a part to play
  16. 16. References 1. Turn Dow the Heat: Why a 4 ° warmer world must be avoided; World Bank 2. Food Price Volatility in Africa. Has it Really Increased? IFPRI discussion paper, 01239 December 2012. 3. Building Resilience: Integrating Climate and Disaster Risks into Development: The World Bank Group experience 82648 V1 4. Energy Sector Policy of the African Development Bank Group, September 2012 5. Climate Change and Human Health, World Health Organization, Fact sheet, July 2005 6. Climate Change Awareness Campaign, South Africa, Department of Environmental Affairs. 7. IPCCC Fifth Assessment Report.