Africa has been dealing with the impacts of climate change since the 1970s. The most recent report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) described the African continent as the one that will be most affected.

What does Africa need to tackle climate change?

Out of the 10 countries most affected by greenhouse gas emissions, six of them are in Africa, yet the continent only receives 5 percent of dedicated climate funding, writes Abou-Sabaa [Reuters]
Out of the 10 countries most affected by greenhouse gas emissions, six of them are in Africa, yet the continent only receives 5 percent of dedicated climate funding, writes Abou-Sabaa [Reuters]

One Planet Summit showcases Africa’s role against climate change – Maria Macharia

While Africa is responsible for merely 4 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, 65 percent of the continent’s estimated population of 1,3 billion people is considered to be directly impacted by climate change.

It is against the backdrop of this irony that global leaders, entrepreneurs, international organizations, and civil society meet in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, on Thursday next week to help accelerate focus and attention on climate investments in line with the Paris Agreement objectives.

The stakeholders will meet under the auspices of the One Planet Summit (OPS), which also focuses on promoting renewable energies, fostering resilience and adaptation and protecting biodiversity in the continent.

“OPS, which is in its third edition, is the French initiative to engage states and global ministers to implement climate policies,” said Mr Lõhmus. Nairobi will be the first first regional host of the OPS.

One Planet Summit (OPS) is held following the realization that resources and solutions for renewable energy already exist in Africa but there is a need to speed their financing and mainstream their development

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French President, Emmanuel Macron, and his Kenyan counterpart, Uhuru Kenyatta, as well as World Bank Group Interim President Kristalina Georgieva and UN Deputy Secretary General Amina Mohammed, will co-chair the conference, which will be among the highlights will co-chair the conference, which will be among the highlights of the fourth session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA-4) running from March 11-15.

Ado Lohmus, a UNEA special envoy, this week confirmed Macron will be in the East African country next week.

“On the 14th, he (Macron) will open the OPS, which will also be meeting here in Kenya alongside UNEA,” Lohmus said in Nairobi this week.

More than 2000 delegates from around the world have registered to attend UNEA-4 and are to be a key part of OPS proceedings.

OPS is one in a series of some climate events this year leading up to the UN 2019 Climate Summit and to the 25th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 25) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

In December 2018, the World Bank Group announced a major new set of climate targets for 2021-2025, doubling its current 5-year investments to around $200 billion in support for countries to take ambitious climate action.

Africa, from the shores of Lake Chad to the Congo Basin, is being hardest hit by the effects of climate change but it can also be at the forefront of solutions

The new plan significantly boosts support for adaptation and resilience, recognizing mounting climate change impacts on lives and livelihoods, especially in the world’s poorest countries. The plan also represents significantly ramped up ambition from the World Bank Group, sending an important signal to the wider global community to do the same.

Ahead of the OPS, Kenya government officials assured preparations for the OPS were progressing well, with the country having previously held international events of this nature.

Last year, Kenya co-hosted the first-ever global conference on the sustainable blue economy, alongside Canada.

OPS is held following the realization that resources and solutions for renewable energy already exist in Africa but there is a need to speed their financing and mainstream their development.

Judy Wakhungu, Kenya’s Ambassador to France, and French State Minister for Ecological and Inclusive Transition, Brune Poirson, recently held meetings to finalise plans for the OPS and UNEA-4.

Macron has previously spoken of his government’s goal to be a strategic partner to Africa in the field of climate change adaptation.

France is the largest financial contributor to the Africa Renewable Energy Initiative (AREI), alongside Germany and followed by the Council of the European Union.

At the Africa-France Summit held in Mali in 2017, the French president announced that financing for renewable energy in Africa would be increased from €2 billion to €3 billion, implemented by the Agence Française de Développement (French Development Agency) over the 2016-2020 period.

“Africa, from the shores of Lake Chad to the Congo Basin, is being hardest hit by the effects of climate change but it can also be at the forefront of solutions. It can succeed where Europe has not always been able to,” Macron prominently said during a state visit to Burkina Faso in late 2017.

This week, the World Bank, a partner for the OPS, stated cities in Sub-Saharan Africa, particularly Nairobi, could inform global action on climate change.

Nairobi already has a strong private sector presence as the eighth most attractive city in Africa for foreign direct investment, according to the global institution.

“As such, it can share important lessons learned with other cities in the region and around the world. The One Planet Summit provides the perfect space to do just that by actively inviting new partners to collaborate and launch new initiatives,” the World Bank stated.

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The Greenpeace and AirVisual analysis of air pollution readings from 3,000 cities around the world found that 64% exceed the World Health Organization’s annual exposure guideline for PM2.5 fine particulate matter – tiny airborne particles, about a 40th of the width of a human hair, that are linked to a wide range of health problems.

90% of people breathe polluted air; New Delhi is world’s most polluted big city, Beijing eighth

Beijing ranks #122 on the list of the world's most polluted cities
Beijing ranks #122 on the list of the world’s most polluted cities

As temperatures fall, air quality worsens in the Indian capital – AIWA! NO!

New Delhi was the world’s most polluted capital city in 2018, two groups monitoring air pollution said on Tuesday in a study of the amount of fine particulate matter known as PM2.5 in 61 capital cities around the world. 

The Indian capital, home to more than 20 million people, was followed by the Bangladesh capital of Dhaka and Kabul, capital of Afghanistan, according to the study by IQ AirVisual, a Swiss-based group that gathers air-quality data globally, and Greenpeace.

FILE PHOTO: Men walk in front of the India Gate shrouded in smog in New Delhi, India, December 26, 2018. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi
PHOTO: Men walk in front of the India Gate shrouded in smog in New Delhi, India, December 26, 2018. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

The Indian capital, home to more than 20 million people, was followed by the Bangladesh capital of Dhaka and Kabul, capital of Afghanistan, according to the study by IQ AirVisual, a Swiss-based group that gathers air-quality data globally, and Greenpeace.

New Delhi’s toxic air is caused by vehicle and industrial emissions, dust from building sites, smoke from the burning of rubbish and crop residue in nearby fields.

The city’s average annual concentration of PM2.5 in a cubic meter of air was 113.5 in 2018, the groups said in their report, more than double the level of Beijing, which averaged 50.9 during the year, making it the eighth most polluted in the world.

FILE PHOTO: A man rides his bicycle in front of the India Gate shrouded in smog in New Delhi, India, December 26, 2018. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi
FILE PHOTO: A man rides his bicycle in front of the India Gate shrouded in smog in New Delhi, India, December 26, 2018. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

PM2.5, or particles of 2.5 micrometers or less in diameter, is so dangerous because it lodges deep in the lungs.

The World Health Organization sets a daily mean air quality guideline of 25 micrograms of PM2.5 per cubic meter of air.

China struggled for years to enforce environment rules and crack down on polluting industries, but it has benefited in recent years from vastly improved legislation and greater political will to combat poor air quality.

“In mainland China, in particular, this has led to significant improvements in year-on-year reductions in PM2.5 levels,” the groups said in their joint study.

India is home to 15 of the 20 most polluted cities in the world, they said.

“The question which remains to be answered is whether there is enough political will to aggressively fight the health emergency India faces today and move away from polluting fuels and practices,” said Pujarini Sen, spokeswoman for Greenpeace India.

Reporting by Mayank Bhardwaj; Editing by Sanjeev Miglani


Beth Bob: (edited)This speaks very well of Kenya. They are doing more than the European countries. USA has reduced and we weren't even in the climate scam that they pushed. We do our part. It is everyone doing their small part. Not like France putting hardship on the people and they have increased on their emissions. We just all need to clean our own rooms.

Climate Change Fuels Innovation in Kenya

Beth Bob:  (edited)This speaks very well of Kenya. They are doing more than the European countries. USA has reduced and we weren’t even in the climate scam that they pushed. We do our part. It is everyone doing their small part. Not like France putting hardship on the people and they have increased on their emissions. We just all need to clean our own rooms.


Climate Change Fuels Innovation in Kenya

|CRIMSON TAZVINZWA, AIWA! NO!|VOA|With the impact of climate change an increasingly pressing global issue, a new generation of start-ups in Kenya is developing new technologies to combat global warming. As Rael Ombuor reports from Nairobi, the technologies offer both environmental and financial sustainability.

The media won’t let Trump bury climate change, but still complicit


Paying attention to climate change, and treating it as a factual matter of settled scientific consensus, are bare minimums for the media


Paying attention to climate change, and treating it as a factual matter of settled scientific consensus, are bare minimums for the media

Severe Cold Spells 

|Jon Allsop, CJR|AIWA! NO!|On Friday, as Americans digested their Thanksgiving dinners, headed out shopping, or stayed in to catch a game, the White House slipped out a dire report on the worsening impact of climate change. The report, issued by 13 federal agencies as part of the Congressionally mandated National Climate Assessment, warned that increasingly frequent natural disasters, like the wildfires ravaging California, could help shear 10 percent off the US economy by 2100 if swift action is not taken. The timing of the report’s release struck many journalists and politicians as a ploy to bury conclusions that contradict President Trump’s extreme deregulatory climate agenda. The hunch was borne out by the Times’s Coral Davenport, who reported that the White House did indeed bet on diminished public interest over Thanksgiving.
 
Using holidays to dump bad news is a timeworn tactic. This time, however, it appears to have backfired, at least to some extent. In news cycles past, a terrifying official report would have driven the agenda for days; in Trump’s Washington, such stories can get submerged within minutes. The relatively quiet holiday weekend at least gave the report a greater share of the available public attention. And Thanksgiving or not, journalists are in no mood to let this president slide embarrassing news out the back door. As Penn State climate scientist Michael E. Mann tweeted Friday, “Ironically, ‘Trump trying to bury climate report’ is such a compelling media narrative that it might lead to GREATER coverage of the National Climate Assessment.”
 
The report got big play on Saturday morning. Using the Newseum’s online gallery of newspaper covers, CJR found that at least 140 titles nationwide put the story prominently on their front page, including the Times, the Post, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, and the Miami Herald. More than 20 of these papers were in California, where wildfires continue to offer a strong news peg. Other titles, from Maine to Hawaii and Florida to Washington state, led off the report with their own localized looks at the impact of climate change. In Mississippi, the Jackson Clarion-Ledger splashed that the issue has been absent from the state’s upcoming US Senate run-off between Republican incumbent Cindy Hyde-Smith (whose comments about the Confederacy and attending a “public hanging” have dominated the debate) and Democratic challenger Mike Espy.
 
This widespread coverage was a positive outcome. On the whole, however, the media is still falling desperately short. With some praiseworthy exceptions, coverage of the California fires has not asserted a strong enough link to climate change—which does not, on its own, “cause” wildfires, but does facilitate and intensify them as rising temperatures make kindling of vegetation. However dire their predictions, official reports remain, to varying degrees, abstractions for news consumers. The media should cite them high up in their stories whenever “real-life” climate tragedies—with their graphic images of human suffering—strike, and vice versa.
 
On the Sunday shows yesterday, the tenor of some coverage was much worse. MSNBC’s Meet the Press gave a platform to the American Enterprise Institute’s Danielle Pletka—a self-professed “not a scientist”—who used her airtime to assert that “we shouldn’t be hysterical” about climate change because  “we just had two of the coldest years… that we have had since the 1980s.” On CNN’s State of the Union, meanwhile, former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum said climate scientists are “driven by money.”
 
Paying attention to climate change, and treating it as a factual matter of settled scientific consensus, are bare minimums for the media. It was thus depressing, over the weekend, that the former counted as a victory while some prominent news organizations could not even manage the latter. It is positive that Trump’s news dump backfired. But when it comes to burying the reality of climate change, the news media is still complicit.
 
Below, more on climate change:

  • A good example: The release of the National Climate Assessment diddovetail with some nice enterprise reporting over the weekend. As of Monday morning, the Times still led its homepage with Somini Sengupta’s dispatch from Vietnam on the global coal industry and Abrahm Lustgarten’s investigation, in partnership with ProPublica, about the devastating consequences of US biofuels regulations in Indonesia.
     
  • A TV failure: Media Matters for America’s John Whitehouse has a good Twitter thread rounding up some of the weekend’s worst TV climate coverage. He also re-ups MMFA’s finding, first published in February, that Sunday news shows did not feature a single scientist during any climate-related segment in 2016 or 2017.
     
  • The shoe fits: On CNN, Brian Stelter pointed out that Fox News only mentioned the climate report once on Friday, devoting more airtime to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s shoes.
     
  • “A shrinking planet”: ICYMI last week, The New Yorker published this haunting deep-dive on our changing climate by the environmentalist and campaigner Bill McKibben. “‘Climate change,’ like ‘urban sprawl’ or ‘gun violence,’ has become such a familiar term that we tend to read past it,” McKibben writes.
     
  • False balance: In the UK, the BBC has repeatedly drawn criticism for giving a platform to climate change deniers. In a September note to staffers, the broadcaster admitted it had got its coverage wrong too often, and offered training on how to report on global warming.
ATUL SINGH Atul Singh is the Founder, CEO and Editor-in-Chief of Fair Observer. He has taught political economy at the University of California, Berkeley and bee .... READ MORE WE BRING YOU PERSPECTIVES FROM AROUND THE WORLD. HELP US TO INFORM AND EDUCATE. YOUR DONATION IS TAX-DEDUCTIBLE. PayPal - The safer, easier way to pay online! Climate change is heating the planet, endangering the lives of billions of human beings and threatening the survival of other species.

U.S. scientists Accused Of Greed By Republicans For Downplaying Climate Report’s Dire Findings

AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE'S DANIELLE PLETKA. CREDIT: NBC NEWS/SCREENSHOT

AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE’S DANIELLE PLETKA. CREDIT: NBC NEWS/SCREENSHOT


|AIWA! NO!
|CNN|One conservative commentator resurrects former go-to phrase “I’m not a scientist.”null –  By MARK HAND

For all our model motions for Labour conference 2018, see here. For guidance on how conference resolutions work, how to submit, etc, see here.

For all our model motions for Labour conference 2018, see here. For guidance on how conference resolutions work, how to submit, etc, see here.

Conservative lawmakers and commentators spent Sunday downplaying the dire warnings in a much-anticipated climate assessment — released Friday by the Trump administration — going as far to accuse the scientists who worked on the report of perpetuating climate “alarmism” in order to keep their jobs.

The scientists who helped draft the fourth National Climate Assessment, according to former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), were attracted to the money that comes with producing a report that highlights the terrible dangers of climate change.

“The reality is that a lot of these scientists are driven by the money that they receive … from people who support their agenda,” Santorum said Sunday in a panel discussion on CNN.

The former Pennsylvania senator and Republican presidential candidate complained that the report was written by hundreds of scientists in the federal bureaucracy and not Trump appointees.

CNN host Dana Bash shot back: “Meaning they’re nonpolitical.”

But Santorum, who once criticized the Pope for making climate change a moral issue, returned to his argument that job security is driving scientists to conclude that humans are the primary cause of worsening climate change. “If there was no climate change, we’d have a lot of scientists looking for work,” he said Sunday.  TOP ARTICLES2/5READ MORE