Possible threat to progress toward development goals for Africa
NAIROBI, KENYA: According to the International Development Research Center (IDRC) climate changes will impede progress toward development goals in Africa and could see the migration of millions of people in Egypt who would lose their livelihoods.
“Climate change touches all Africa including Egypt, said Rawya El-Dabi, regional outreach officer for the IDRC in Cairo.
“Egypt’s environment ministry has warned in a report that climate change could force millions of its citizens to migrate as the sea level rises and agriculture suffers, she told The Daily Star Egypt.
The IDRC s recently launched Climate Change Adaptation in Africa (CCAA) program will be on the ground in Nairobi, Nov. 6-17, with experts available to discuss the urgent need for Africa to adapt to the expected impacts of climate change.
Nations signed on to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change are set to meet for the 12th Conference of Parties to the Climate Change Convention (COP 12) and second Meeting of Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (COP/ MOP 2).
Taking place on the African continent, this round of talks will bring to the foreground the threat climate change poses for some of the world s most vulnerable populations, and the possibility that hard-won development gains in Africa will be undone.
Many parts of Africa already suffer extremes of climate variation, with drought and unpredictable rainfall patterns a major factor in famine and related humanitarian disasters. Climate change is expected to add to these extremes, with the poorest communities least equipped to cope.
“We are trying to establish a skilled body of expertise that will enhance the ability of African countries to adapt to these climate variations, El-Dabi said.
Though its contribution to climate change is negligible, Africa faces an urgent need to adapt to the expected impacts of this global phenomenon.
These include threats to coastal communities from rising sea levels, extreme weather events, and changes in fisheries, increased drought and desertification in southern Africa and the Horn of Africa, and shifting patterns of malaria and other vector borne diseases due to changes in rainfall patterns.
In May 2006, Canada s IDRC and the UK Department for International Development (IDRC) jointly launched the CCAA, a five-year, CA$65 million program for research to support African efforts to increase adaptive capacity on the continent.