We, the African Heads of State and Government, gathered for the inaugural Africa Climate Summit (ACS) in Nairobi, Kenya, from 4th to 6th September 2023; in the presence of other global leaders, intergovernmental organizations, Regional Economic Communities, United Nations Agencies, private sector, civil society organizations, indigenous peoples, local communities, farmer organizations, children, youth, women and academia, hereby:
Sep 08, 2023 by
1. Recall, the Assembly Decisions (AU/Dec.723(XXXII), AU/Dec.764 (XXXIII) and AU/Dec.855(XXXVI)) requesting the African Union Commission to organize an African Climate Summit and endorsing the offer by the Republic of Kenya to host the Summit;
2. Commend the Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change (CAHOSCC) under the Leadership of H.E. President William Ruto for providing a unified approach and political leadership on an African vision that simultaneously pursues climate change and development agenda;
3. Commend the Arab Republic of Egypt for the successful COP27 and its historic outcomes, particularly regarding loss and damage, just transition and energy, and call for the full implementation of all COP27 decisions
4. Take Note of the 6th Assessment Report (AR6) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), stating that the world is not on track to keeping within reach the 1.5°C limit agreed in Paris and that global emissions must be cut by 43% in this decade;
5. Underscore the IPCC confirmation that Africa is warming faster than the rest of the world and, if unabated, climate change will continue to have adverse impacts on African economies and societies, and hamper growth and wellbeing;
6. Express concern that many African countries face disproportionate burdens and risks arising from climate change-related, unpredictable weather events and patterns, including prolonged droughts, devastating floods, wildfires, which cause massive humanitarian crisis with detrimental impacts on economies, health, education, peace and security, among other risks;
7. Acknowledge that climate change is the single greatest challenge facing humanity and the single biggest threat to all life on Earth. It demands urgent and concerted action from all nations to lower emissions and reduce the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere;
8. Recognise that Africa is not historically responsible for global warming, but bears the brunt of its effect, impacting lives, livelihoods, and economies;
9. Reaffirm the principles set out in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and its Paris Agreement, namely equity, common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities,
10. Recall that only seven years remain to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda, and note with concern that 600 million people in Africa still lack access to electricity while 970 million lack access to clean cooking;
11. Concerned that despite Africa having an estimated 40 percent of the world’s renewable energy resources, only $60 billion or two percent of US$3 trillion renewable energy investments in the last decade have come to Africa,
12. Further recognise that African cities and urban centres are growing rapidly, and by 2050 would be home to over 1.0 billion people. Cognisant of the fact that rapid urbanization, poverty, and inequality limit planning capacities and other urban dynamics which increase people’s exposure and vulnerability to hazards and have thus turned cities into disaster hotspots across the continent.
13. Emphasise that Africa possesses both the potential and the ambition to be a vital component of the global solution to climate change. As home to the world’s youngest and fastest-growing workforce, coupled with massive untapped renewable energy potential, abundant natural assets and entrepreneurial spirit, our continent has the fundamentals to spearhead a climate compatible pathway as a thriving, cost-competitive industrial hub with the capacity to support other regions in achieving their net zero ambitions.
14. Reiterate Africa’s readiness to create an enabling environment, enact policies and facilitate investments necessary to unlock resources to meet our own climate commitments, and contribute meaningfully to decarbonisation of the global economy.
15. Recognize the important role of forests in Africa, in particular the Congo Basin rainforest in regulating global climate change
16. Further recognize the critical importance of the oceans in climate action and commitments made on ocean sustainability in multiple fora such as the Second UN Oceans Conference in 2022, and the Moroni Declaration for Ocean and Climate Action in Africa in 2023
Collective action needed.
17. We call upon the global community to act with urgency in reducing emissions, fulfilling its obligations, keeping past promises, and supporting the continent in addressing climate change, specifically to:
i) Accelerate all efforts to reduce emissions to align with goals set forth in the Paris Agreement
ii) Honor the commitment to provide $100 billion in annual climate finance, as promised 14 years ago at the Copenhagen conference.
iii) Uphold commitments to a fair and accelerated process of phasing down coal, and abolishment of all fossil fuel subsidies.
18. We call for climate-positive investments that catalyse a growth trajectory, anchored in the industries poised to transform our planet and enable African countries to achieve stable middle-income status by 2050.
19. We urge global leaders to join us in seizing this unprecedented opportunity to accelerate global decarbonization, while pursuing equality and shared prosperity;
20. We call for the operationalization of the Loss & Damage fund as agreed at COP27 and resolve for a measurable Global Goal on Adaptation (GGA) with indicators and targets to enable assessment of progress against negative impacts of climate change
We commit to:
21. Developing and implementing policies, regulations and incentives aimed at attracting local, regional and global investment in green growth and inclusive economies;
22. Propelling Africa's economic growth and job creation in a manner that limits our own emissions and also aids global decarbonization efforts, by leapfrogging traditional industrial development and fostering green production and supply chains on a global scale;
23. Focusing our economic development plans on climate-positive growth, including expansion of just energy transitions and renewable energy generation for industrial activity, climate smart and restorative agricultural practices, and essential protection and enhancement of nature and biodiversity;
24. Strengthening actions to halt and reverse biodiversity loss, deforestation, desertification, as well to restore degraded lands to achieve land degradation neutrality;
25. Strengthening continental collaboration, which is essential to enabling and advancing green growth, including but not limited to regional and continental grid interconnectivity, and further accelerating the operationalization of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Agreement;
26. Advancing green industrialization across the Continent by prioritizing energy-intense industries to trigger a virtuous cycle of renewable energy deployment and economic activity, with a special emphasis on adding value to Africa's natural endowments;
27. Redoubling our efforts to boost agricultural yields through sustainable agricultural practices, to enhance food security while minimizing negative environmental impacts;
28. Taking the lead in the development of global standards, metrics, and market mechanisms to accurately value and compensate for the protection of nature, biodiversity, socio-economic co-benefits, and the provision of climate services;
29. Finalising and implementing the African Union Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan, with the view to realizing the 2050 vision of living in harmony with nature;
30. Providing all the necessary reforms and support required to raise the share of renewable energy financing to at least 20 percent by by 2030.
31. Integrating climate, biodiversity and ocean agendas into national plans and processes in order to ensure their contribution to sustainable development, livelihoods and sustainability objectives, and to increase the resilience of local communities, coastal areas and national economies;
32. Supporting smallholder farmers, indigenous peoples, and local communities in the green economic transition given their key role in ecosystems stewardship;
33. Identifying, prioritizing and mainstreaming adaptation into development policy-making and planning, including in the context of national plans and Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs);
34. Building effective partnership between Africa and other regions, to meet the needs for financial, technical and technological support, and knowledge sharing for climate change adaptation;
35. Promoting investments in urban infrastructure including through upgrading informal settlements and slum areas to build climate resilient cities and urban centres.
36. Strengthening early warning systems and climate information services, as well as taking early action to protect lives, livelihoods and assets and inform long-term decision-making related to climate change risks. We emphasise the importance of embracing indigenous knowledge and citizen science in both adaptation strategies and early warning systems;
37. Enhancing drought resilience systems to shift from crisis management to proactive drought preparedness and adaptation, to significantly reduce drought vulnerability of people, economic activities, and ecosystems
38. Accelerating implementation of the African Union Climate Change and Resilient Development Strategy and Action Plan (2022-2032)
CALL TO ACTION
39. Call upon world leaders to appreciate that decarbonizing the global economy is also an opportunity to contribute to equality and shared prosperity;
40. Invite Development Partners from both the global south and north to align and coordinate their technical and financial resources directed toward Africa to promote sustainable utilization of Africa’s natural assets for the continent’s progression toward low carbon development, and contributing to global decarbonization;
41. To accomplish this vision of economic transformation in harmony with our climate needs, we call upon the international community to contribute to the following:
i) Increasing Africa’s renewable generation capacity from 56 GW in 2022 to at least 300 GW by 2030, both to address energy poverty and to bolster the global supply of cost-effective clean energy for industry;
ii) Shifting the energy intensive primary processing of Africa’s raw material exports to the continent, also to serve as an anchor demand for our renewable energy and a means of rapidly reducing global emissions;
iii) Call for access to and transfer of environmentally sound technologies, including technologies that consist of processes and innovation methods to support Africa’s green industrialisation and transition.
iv) Designing global and regional trade mechanisms in a manner that enables products from Africa to compete on fair and equitable terms;
v) Request that trade-related environmental tariffs and non-tariff barriers must be subject to multilateral discussions and agreements and not be unilateral, arbitrary or discriminatory measures;
vi) Accelerating efforts
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