Scaling-up Adaptation Action in Africa took place on September 5th, 14:30hrs - 15:30hrs on the sidelines of the Africa Climate Summit
On the sidelines of the Africa Climate Summit, the Africa Adaptation Initiative, an Africa-led initiative endorsed by 54 African countries, organized a side-event panel discussion focusing on scaling up adaptation action in Africa. The session focused on raising the ambition of adaptation action and support for the continent, highlighting significant efforts to advance adaptation action at scale on the continent, and announcing investments related to adaptation.
Speaking at the event, United States Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, noted that Africa was being disproportionately affected by the climate crisis and, to combat this, early and effective adaptation was required. He emphasized that there was a need for urgent action on adaptation breaking the business-as-usual code. He added that although Africa was suffering the worst climate change impacts, through the President's Emergency Plan for Adaptation and Resilience (PREPARE) that US President Joe Biden launched in November 2021 at COP 26 in Glasgow, the United States would help Africa adapt to these impacts.
He announced that the United States intended to provide an additional $20 million to the Africa Adaptation Initiative (AAI) Food Security Accelerator, which would speed and scale up private sector investments in climate-resilient food security in Africa. Through the support, the Accelerator would help identify, structure, and de-risk a pipeline of transformative adaptation investments in food security, helping to unlock private capital that is already standing ready to invest in these innovative solutions, ranging from cold storage logistics to climate resilient agriculture and post-harvesting processes. This would bring the US total support to the Africa Adaptation Initiative Food Security Accelerator to $45 million, following the $25 million announcement made during COP27. He also announced that the United States intended to provide an additional $10 million to the CRAFT TA Facility, which would help to demonstrate and de-risk market opportunity for climate-resilient technologies and solutions that help manage risks to food security.
Also making his remarks, H.E. Ban Ki Moon - Former United Nations Secretary General, President, and Chair of the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), stated that the changing climate threatened the very fabric of our societies, and its impacts caused unprecedented heat waves, droughts, floods, and more destructive weather events led to food insecurity, water scarcity, and the displacement of communities.
Also speaking at the event was Mr. Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi - Secretary General of United Cities and Local Governments Africa who acknowledged that the Africa Adaptation Initiative was one of the most appropriate mechanisms to accelerate the implementation of adaptation and resilience to climate change in Africa. He also reiterated and recognized the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN) and the Egyptian government for choosing UCLG - Africa to host the Technical Support Unit of the African Adaptation Initiative.
Other panelists included H.E. Julius Maada Bio - President of Sierra Leone, H.E. Sahle-Work Zewde - President of Ethiopia and AMCEN President, H.E. Isaias Afwerki - President of Eritrea, H.E. Baerbel Kofler- Parliamentary State Secretary, Germany, and H.E. Yasmine Fouad - Minister of Environment, the Arabic Republic of Egypt who explored actions needed to enhance adaptation in Africa, drawing from country experiences and perspectives, calling upon developed countries to invest and deliver on their commitments to help poor and vulnerable countries adapt to climate change by providing financial support and developing institutional capacity.
Mr. Ibrahim Thiaw - Executive Secretary of, the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, Prof. Petteri Taalas - Secretary General, of the World Meteorological Organization, Mr. Rodger Voorhies - President, of Global Growth and Opportunity, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and Axel Van Trotsenburg - Vice President, World Bank were also part of the panelist delving into institutional actions in supporting adaptation initiatives to accelerate action on the ground.