People in Africa are already experiencing a significant impact on their livelihoods from climate change. This is tragic in on several levels.
Firstly, Africa’s historical contribution to the causes of heightened greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere is negligible. Climate change is not a threat of Africa’s making.
Secondly, the solution to the problem is mostly outside of Africa’s control. It is in the hands of the developed and large industrialising nations.
Thirdly, climate change has particularly serious impacts on countries at risk of instability in vulnerable climatic areas. More strenuous climate conditions represent an added cause of instability, and increases already existing stresses. Fragile states do not have the capacity to adapt to changing circumstances as quickly as others and are more likely to further become destabilised. As a continent, Africa possesses by far the largest number of countries at risk of instability with high levels of climate vulnerability.
Attached for download are a presentation and analysis paper which examine the broad impact of climate change on the African continent and investigate how strategically best to address the emerging climate challenge.
The paper was written by Nick Mabey and Jan Ole Kiso for the conference ‘Africa Beyond Aid II’, held in Brussels on 25th and 26th June.
Jan Ole Kiso works for the UK Cabinet Office, but writes here in a personal capacity. Both Jan and Nick were members of the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit project on ‘Countries at Risk of Instability’.