National, News

Africa not contributing to global warming-leaders

By Mamer Abraham

Leaders at the Africa Climate Summit have ruled that the continent does not contribute to global warming through carbon emissions related to the use of fossil fuels.

The summit, in a joint communiqué, blames Western nations responsible for carbon emissions that culminate in Africa warming faster than other parts of the world.

That they do not observe the 1.5-degree Celsius limit agreed upon in Paris to cut global emissions by 43 percent.

“We, the African heads of state and government… recognize that Africa is not historically responsible for global warming but bears the brunt of its effect, impacting lives, livelihoods, and economies,” the communiqué reads in part.

The heads of state called for decarbonization of the global economy and channel resources towards low-carbon development.

“We… call upon world leaders to appreciate that decarbonizing the global economy is also an opportunity to contribute to equality and shared prosperity,” the joint statement continued.

The heads of state urged the international community to raise African renewable energy generation capacity from 56 GW in 2022 to 300 GW in 2030 in a bid to curb energy poverty and strengthen the supply of clean energy across the continent.

The communiqué further called for the processing of Africa’s raw material exports to meet renewable energy demands and limit global emissions,

“Promote the usage of environmentally friendly technologies, allows Africa to compete on fair terms in regional and global trade, elevate Africa’s energy market, and give beneficial climate services to locals,” it continues.

Last year, South Sudan Minister of Petroleum, Puot Kang Chol, slammed the West during the South Sudan Energy and Power Conference (SSOP 2022) for accusing South Sudan of polluting the environment while using fossil fuels.

Puot said the countries carrying out the energy transition, carbon emission, and environmental pollution campaigns against the use of fossil fuels were the ones emitting 100 percent, while African countries emitted nothing, citing South Sudan as having zero emissions.

“I think it will not be fair if my emission is zero and yours is 100 percent, and you say, let’s hang ourselves using one rope. In South Sudan, or Africa as a whole, 90 percent of what we have remains intact. There is no pollution here in South Sudan, but it is happening elsewhere, and we are being told that you are the ones polluting the environment. How can we do that, for heaven’s sake? He stated.

Dr. Riek Machar Teny, who opened the conference on behalf of the president, said the country must exploit adequate fossil fuels for infrastructural development before the energy transition to clean energy reaches the country.



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