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08.12.2015 Feature Article

Ghana And The Vulnerable Countries Calls For Attention On Finance For Adaptation At COP21

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The 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will take place from November 30 to December 11, 2015, in Paris, France .

The Adaptation Fund will be an active participant during COP 21, and is hosting a Side Event, Multimedia Exhibit and Contributor Dialogue in addition to speaking at a High Level Segment and participating in other related activities.

With 196 member nations, the UNFCCC seeks a binding, universal climate change agreement that stabilizes greenhouse gas emissions at levels that prevent dangerous human interference with the climate system while also helping countries adapt to extreme weather events, floods, droughts and sea rise that are already impacting vulnerable populations throughout the world.

It is now recognized that adaptation is equally important as mitigation in addressing climate change but requires significant additional resources to meet a growing and urgent demand for climate adaptation projects.

Negotiations on a new climate deal are struggling due to trust and unnecessary delay- but we will not be deceived by technical or procedural tricks. Sam Ogallah of the Pan African Climate Change Justice Alliance (PACJA), headquartered in Kenya referred to the problem at the talks over the responses of rich developed countries which show no sense of urgency-news that finance for adaptation, loss and damage are getting pushed out of the Paris text is already creating anxieties and turning back the progress so far made in previous climate negotiations before Paris.

The long-term goal of Ghana’s adaptation is to increase climate resilience and decrease vulnerability for enhanced sustainable development. Ghana will require $12.79 billion for adaptation – $4.21 billion (34%) will be mobilized at the national level, whilst the remaining $8.29 billion is the international contribution and Ghana is looking for in order to meet the cost of implementing its adaptation actions.

Africa and other developing countries remain vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. In Ghana, the agricultural and food economy are already under threat as local farmers reel under the severity of the weather. Achieving a 2oC global temperature target is ambitious but means for adaptation and mitigation remain critical to the vulnerable.

According to an estimation made by Oxfam, if the total sum of given for adaptation to date by developed countries is divided among all small holder farmers in developing countries each individual would receive US$3 equivalent to the price of biscuits. Recent studies suggest that adaptation costs require between US $20 billion and US$30 billion every year for the next 10 to 20 year. The African negotiating block has called for adaptation finance to reach US$32 billion a year by 2020.

The vulnerable are therefore demanding for equity, fair deal and legally binding agreement. Countries must be mandated to include contributions on all the elements including provision for money for adaptation for developing countries by developed countries.

Fariya Abubakari is the climate tracker for adopt a negotiator program.

Fariya Abubakari
Fariya Abubakari, © 2015

The author has 26 publications published on Modern Ghana.Column: FariyaAbubakari

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