Eight Out Of Ten Young Africans Think Climate Change Adversely Affects Their Lives
We already feel the consequences of global warming, particularly concerning our health and our access to food and water. “Time is running out to reach long-term temperature targets,” warned Aziz Mekouar, ambassador for multilateral negotiations at COP22, “but political mobilisation is there, as proven by the Marrakech Proclamation, declared by 197 parties at the Convention,” he added at the closing of COP22 on November 18, 2016. Indeed, this COP was a real success, with record participation: 29,000 participants in the Blue Zone and more than 35,000 participants in the Green Zone.
Morocco, the host country of the 22nd Conference of the Parties, is deeply committed to fighting climate change, not only within its own region but also on the African continent, and has made green economy a major strategic objective. “Our entire economic ecosystem, from design to consumption to distribution, must be transformed for our collective well-being,” Aziz Mekouar added.
As stipulated in the Paris Agreement, which has already been ratified by 113 countries that represent 78.96% of global emissions, the increase in global temperature must remain below 2°C. If not, we are at risk of condemning an entire generation: millennials, born between 1980 and 2000. They are the ones who will suffer the most from the consequences of global warming. Therefore, the study, carried out by CG Consulting and commissioned by the Steering Committee of COP22, “Climate change, Time for action”, sought its answers from millennials. This study marks the first ever to survey the opinions of millennials in Africa on the topic of climate change, including their fears and concerns, as well as their willingness to act and the means they need to do so. They are the latest generation to be able to curb climate change.
Africa: first victim of global warming
Droughts, fires, floods, violent storms: global warming is responsible for considerable changes in our environment, especially in Africa, a continent that is particularly vulnerable to climate change. African millennials are directly affected by the following phenomena:
- 86% of young people surveyed notice more frequent and unpredictable rains
- 79% report on increased diseases of crops and livestock
- 77% note the progress of desertification
- 73% note the increase in forest fires
These consequences have an impact on agriculture and food security. Africa will have to triple its agricultural production by 2050 to meet the needs of a population that will have doubled. Hence the importance of the initiative for the Adaptation of Agriculture in Africa (AAA), initiated by Morocco, which aims to secure financing for the adaptation of African agriculture and to increase agricultural productivity on the continent by securing 30% of the investment plan from 2020 for the adaptation of developing countries. That represents $30 billion a year for the development of Africa.
“Historically, agriculture has been largely de-prioritised within the international fight against climate change, particularly suffering from a considerable lack of financing, despite the fact that it is the most vulnerable sector,” said Salaheddine Mezouar, president of COP22.