African communities to benefit as UK funds new climate change adaptation projects

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African communities to benefit as UK funds new climate change adaptation projects

According to the World Bank, climate change could reduce GDP by 6% in many African countries by 2050, and up to 132 million people could be pushed into extreme poverty by 2030.

In response to this, the UK has committed to supporting African governments to roll out critical climate adaptation projects so at-risk communities can adapt to the impact of extreme weather and changing climates. Nigeria, as well as other countries in Africa, is eligible to benefit from the Africa Regional Climate and Nature Programme (ARCAN).

COP26 President Alok Sharma announced the new UK support for the Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program (AAAP) – an initiative endorsed by African Union leaders and led by the African Development Bank, Global Centre on Adaptation, and Africa Adaptation Initiative, to back African-led plans to accelerate resilience-building across Africa.

The announcements came on the second day of COP26, the two-week UN Climate Change Conference, where world leaders are meeting with the aim to agree on how to tackle the urgent threat of global climate change.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson also announced the UK is offering an ambitious new guarantee mechanism – the ‘Room to Run’ guarantee – to the African Development Bank (AfDB).

This is expected to unlock up to £1.45 billion ($2 billion) worth of new financing for projects across the continent, half of which will help countries adapt to the impacts of climate change.

UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said, “More finance for African nations to develop and adapt to climate change is important as these countries find themselves on the frontline of impacts. It is a huge investment opportunity.

“By combining our cash with other donors and businesses, and working with partners such as the African Development Bank to direct funding into green projects, today we are delivering on our commitment to African-led climate adaptation.”

UK Minister for Africa Vicky Ford said, “For communities across Africa, the impact of climate change is being felt right now.

From cyclones in Southern Africa to locusts in East Africa, changing weather patterns are already having catastrophic impacts for communities living across the continent, impacting lives and jobs. This is despite African nations being responsible for just 2-3% of global emissions.

“New support announced today will enable African countries to adapt to a changing climate and build resilience to the impacts of climate change. This is essential if communities and countries are to thrive in an uncertain future.”

The UK is a long-standing supporter of Africa’s adaptation to climate change, with around half of UK’s £2.7 billion ($3.7 billion) adaptation budget between 2016 and 2020 spent in Africa.

Speaking also, the UK’S Deputy High Commissioner in Lagos, Ben Llewellyn-Jones, said, “Africa is already bearing the brunt of climate impacts as a consequence of dangerous climate change. The need to scale up adaptation finance to protect the people and economies from the impact of climate change is clear.

“Climate action, building resilience, and sustainable development are inextricably linked. Working with key partners such as the African Development Bank and others, this new suite of programs will support African countries, including Nigeria, to adapt to the effects of climate change.”

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