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COP27 shouldn’t be just talk… actions must follow, says Akinwumi Adesina

COP27 shouldn’t be just talk… actions must follow, says Akinwumi Adesina
September 22
18:16 2022

Akinwumi Adesina, president of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group, says COP27 has to deliver on the adaptation promises for developing countries.

Adesina said this at the second ministerial meeting on climate and development held on the sidelines of the ongoing UN general assembly (UNGA) in New York.

The 2022 UN climate change conference (COP27) is scheduled to hold at the Sharm El Sheikh international convention centre in Egypt.

According to Adesina, Africa is in great financial distress and resources must be made available to the continent in the shortest possible time.

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“In Cabo Verde, they have not had rain for nearly three years. In Mauritania, vast areas are deserted because of lack of rain,” he said.

“Africa is suffering, choking, and is in serious financial distress for what it didn’t cause. There must be a greater sense of urgency not in talking, but in doing and delivering resources that the continent needs very desperately.

“We must deliver the goods there [COP27]. If there are goods to be delivered, it’s really about adaptation. We desperately need to have the financing for adaptation.”

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Bill Gates, chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, said adaptation is not getting as much attention as it deserves.

He said funding needs to be channeled to things that have the highest impact, adding that there is a need to invest in technologies and scientists in developing countries.

“Adaptation never gets the attention it deserves. We need to make sure we are funding the things that have the highest impact,” he said.

“It is fantastic that there is the goal of doubling adaptation money by 2025 to $40 billion. I will say a few things about how we think about measuring those $40 billion. The first is that it should probably be focused on low-income countries. The needs there are quite traumatic. There is a question of how we define that money given these weather events and their effects on agriculture.

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“I don’t think the world community is saying that we should spend less on vaccines in order to fund climate adaptation, but rather that we want this money to be incremental in the aid budget.”

On his part, John Kerry, US special presidential envoy for climate, said there is a need for urgent action.

“We are late. We must act. I’m fed up with saying the same thing too many times in the same meetings. Business as usual is the collective enemy. It’s time for action. We are working on something serious to be put on the table at Sharm El Sheikh,” he said.

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This story is published in partnership with Report for the World, a global service program that supports local public interest journalism.

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