Climate change poses a grave challenge that calls for global solidarity, as the consequences know no borders. However, there is little progress being made despite high-profile forums such as the recent United Nations climate change meeting in the Egyptian resort city of Sharm el-Sheikh. And this despite an agreement at the annual climate summit in Glasgow in 2021, COP26, where some vital political goals and targets were set.
In Glasgow, countries agreed to a pact, which set common targets such as limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, phasing out fossil fuels and increasing climate finance. However, these meetings are proving to be mere talking shops, as the problem mounts.
Despite great expectations from Glasgow 2021, where nearly 200 countries agreed to intensify efforts to fight climate change, urging governments to curb climate-warming, COP27 in Egypt failed to deliver a plan to reduce global emissions.
A sticking point has been reluctance by wealthy nations to meet increase funding to protect the most vulnerable countries from the hazards of a hotter planet. The only positive development is that for the first time in 30 years, it was agreed that a “loss and damage fund” be set up to help developing countries deal with the climate crisis. However, this alone will not solve global warming.
Clearly, there is more work to do and this is where the private sector and non-governmental organisations have a role to play. As climate change experts have pointed out, solutions will be best driven by communities already experiencing the adverse effects.
The Nation Media Group and its partners are making a contribution through its annual continental Kusi Ideas Festival, which was this year held at Karura Forest in Nairobi, an iconic venue that was made famous by the late Nobel laureate Wangari Maathai, who waged a bitter struggle to fight land grabbers.
The fourth edition of the Kusi Ideas Festival that ended yesterday was attended by government officials, the private sector and various climate champions to share ideas on appropriate solutions. Africa’s voice must be projected and heard in discussions to push for solutions to save our common global heritage that is the environment.