Capital Ethiopia Newspaper

Morocco climate conference seeks more abiding agreement

Marrakech Morocco

Less than two months remain until Marrakech, the tourist city of Morocco hosts the COP 22 climate conference. The committee which is being run by Said Benrayane, Ambassador Councilor to the Cop 22, has been making preparations, making sure the hotels and meeting halls are equipped with air conditioning and Internet.  Hopes are high that this conference in Marrakech will bring about a better result than last year’s Paris agreement.

Experts forecast that climate change could cause the displacement of 250 million people across the world by 2050. It estimates that an additional six million will have to flee their homes each year if global warming continues at the same rate. Tens of millions of people already have to vacate their homes every year due to natural disasters — which are on the rise. In 2012 alone over 32m were displaced.

In Sub-Saharan Africa, researchers believe food security will be the region’s overarching challenge, with dangers from droughts, flooding, and shifts in rainfall.

Between 1.5°C-2°C warming, drought and aridity, will contribute to farmers losing 40-80 percent of cropland conducive to growing maize, millet, and sorghum by the 2030s-2040s, the researchers found.

In a 4°C warmer world, around the 2080s, annual precipitation may decrease by up to 30 percent in southern Africa, while East Africa will see more rainfall, according to multiple studies. Ecosystem changes to pastoral lands, such as a shift from grass to woodland savannas as levels of carbon dioxide increase, could reduce food for grazing cattle.

The recent El Nino crisis in Ethiopia is one of the examples of the impact of climate change which has led over 10 million Ethiopians, including six million children to seek emergency aid after crops failed and livestock was damaged.

Roughly 60 percent of greenhouse gas emissions hail from fossil-fuel use, with coal, natural gas methane leakage into the atmosphere, and tar sands from oil leaving the highest carbon footprints. Conventional liquid oil boasts the lowest footprint (about three-fourths that of coal), arguably making oil the real bridge energy source in a full transition to a global wind/solar infrastructure

Other greenhouse gases derived from human activity include nitrous oxide (the breakdown product of nitrate fertilizer), carbon dioxide, and methane—also byproducts of industrial agriculture, particularly cattle. That industrial food production also contributes to global warming makes a transition to ecologically-based agriculture imperative.

And the above notions will push the 11,000 thousands participant of COP 22 to persuade the developed countries to give more aid to poor countries for combating climate change and to push industries in reducing carbon emission.

Poor countries need more reforms and abiding lows from the Marrakech Low-Emissions Solutions Conference which is part of the overall global agenda to bring together the stakeholders that can design and implement Nationally Determined Contributions and Low-Emission Development Strategies (LEDSs) under the Paris Agreement.

The conference will attempt to bring together all the key players including business, and government organizations to try to find solutions to climate change that can be implemented quickly. They will work on problem solving, brainstorming, and global co-creation, without inter-governmental negotiations or agreements. The conference will support all signatories to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

At the Low-Emissions Solutions Conference attempts will be made to use research based solutions for climate change.

In Paris last December, nearly 200 countries agreed on a binding global compact to slash greenhouse gases and keep global temperature increases to “well below” 2 degrees Celsius. In September China and the US, which is responsible for 38 percent of greenhouse gasses, signed an agreement considered to be a positive first step.

Rodrigo Duterte , president of the Philippines  criticized the Paris agreement and said  the US and China are blocking the progress of developing countries.

Duterte claimed that industrialized countries are “dictating the destiny” of developing ones by requiring them to cut carbon emissions.

“We have not reached the age of industrialization. We are going into it. But you have an agreement that will impose limitations on us. We will maintain the present emission. That’s stupid,” he said.

According to Said Benrayane, COP 22  President  the conference will become nothing if agreements are too little. We have seen that no punishment has made so far for those who emit gases in abundance and poison the atmosphere   with high magnitude.’’

He added that the North African country plans to generate 42pct of its energy from renewable energy by 2020, with one-third of that total coming from solar, wind and hydropower apiece. His feels it is unfair that some nations are making great strides to improving climate change while others are not.

Nizar Baraka, President of COP 22 scientific Committee

“Agreements should be abiding, when nations do not comply there should be consequences,  there must be a compensation for the developing countries.’’

“I hope at the November conference there will be strong debates, we will present the  damage  made by climate change, we will  deeply see the  things that have been made to curb climate change,” he said.

Current estimates of financial resources needed to support African countries as they attempt to alleviate and adapt to climate change are still vague, but they all indicate that costs will be in the tens of billions of dollars per annum. It is increasingly clear that voluntary contributions by developed countries will not be enough to meet the needs of the developing world.

Because of these shortcoming, financing climate change has become one of the hottest topics in international negotiations. In light of this, several proposals to generate new funds are being put forward within the context of the UNFCCC that could make a substantial contribution towards the resources needed to respond to this global crisis.

Since 2011 Global Environment Facility (GEF) Since 2001 has provided over USD1.3 billion in grant financing and mobilized US$7 billion from other sources for 320 adaptation projects in 129 countries, including all Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and 33 small island developing states. These projects are expected to directly reduce the vulnerability of at least 17 million people.

According to Nizar Baraka, President of COP 22 scientific Committee the application of climate adaptation and mitigation should be get great funding in order to minimize the risk of climate change and COP 22 should give great attention to these.

‘’Many governments and organizations across the   world are already adapting to climate change. This is important because we are already seeing the impacts of climate change – including sea level rise, changing precipitation patterns, and more frequent incidences of heat waves and other extreme weather events.

“While reducing greenhouse gas emissions is required to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, a certain amount of global warming is inevitable, due to the long-lasting nature of greenhouse gases already in the atmosphere, and to heat already stored in the oceans. Adapting to the changes that are already underway, and preparing for future climate change, can help reduce the risks societies will face from climate change. And we all the world states should budget big money and strict policy to make big result on these aspect.’’ He said.

But these achievements  that has been made so far in combating climate change  will not bring good results if countries across the globe will not abide there  works  to climate agreement and COP 22 hopefully will address this point.