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Pan African Climate Entity Urges World Leaders to Consider Africans’ Interests at COP26

Logo of the Pan Africa Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA)

Members of the consortium of Africa-based entities seeking to find solutions to climatic and environmental challenges, the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA), have called on the U.S President to reach out to other world leaders and work toward outcomes that favor Africans during the planned United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) later this year. 

PACJA, a consortium of more than 1000 organizations from 48 African countries that brings together a diverse membership including Faith-based and community-based entities has urged President Joe Biden to “Marshal the support of the global community” at the ongoing Leaders Summit on Climate.

In their Wednesday, April 21 statement, PACJA members say that the Summit presents an opportunity “to reset global climate action and aim for the level of ambition needed to avoid catastrophic climate change and protect those already suffering climate change impacts, particularly in Africa.”

The April 22 - 23 Leaders Summit on Climate, which President Biden is hosting brings together 40 world leaders to discuss climate issues. The virtual conference is also expected to influence the outcome of COP26 scheduled to take place from November 1 - 12.

“Marshal the support of the global community for a COP26 outcome that is desirable to the African people, and that is consistent with the continent's realities,” the members of PACJA say.

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They add, “After the failure of COP25 to deliver meaningful progress, Africa now counts on COP26 for a global climate policy and action framework that responds to their unique circumstances created by the injustices of disproportionate vulnerability, exposures to risks and incapacity to protect itself without help – despite its insignificant contribution to climate change.”

President Biden should also “push for physical negotiations and COP to increase the participation of African governments and peoples, who would be otherwise cut off because of technological, energy and internet access, limitations,” PACJA members appeal in their April 21 statement.

They also call on the U.S government to avail resources to support countries in Africa to meet their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) targets, “which are largely conditional on external funding.”

To realize such support, PACJA members say, “the US must start by increasing its financial contributions to the Green Climate Fund, by first restoring its initial $3 billion pledge and leading other industrialized countries to substantially increase climate finance flow to Africa.”

Former U.S. President, Donald Trump cancelled the country’s $3 billion pledge to the Green Climate Fund, which had been established to help developing nations that are party to the Paris Agreement in the adaptation and mitigation of practices that counter climate change.   

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“The US equally has both the means and the influence to change the course of the disproportionally small flow of desperately needed adaptation finance to Africa, which today stands at only 25%, despite the global commitment to raise it to at least 50%, at par with mitigation spending,” they say in the April 21 statement.

They further call on the U.S President to “foster a low-carbon, just and recovery that fully integrates climate change and the need to strengthen the resilience of African countries and communities, and other developing regions to minimize the adverse impact of major disruptions.”

The members of PACJA also urge President Biden to “facilitate meaningful technology transfer and capacity building targeting the developing nations especially in renewable energy to address the energy needs of the African people by harnessing the already abundant natural resources like solar, geothermal and wind resource.”

Meanwhile, in his message for the Leaders Summit on Climate, Pope Francis says that the gathering of the world leaders encourages humanity to "take charge of the care of nature, of this gift that we have received and that we have to heal, guard, and carry forward."

In his video message “to White House Climate Summit” on YouTube, the Holy Father says that the taking care of nature “is increasingly significant because it is a challenge we face in the post-pandemic era. We need to keep moving forward and we know that one doesn’t come out of a crisis the same way one entered. We come out either better or worse."

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“We need to ensure that the environment is cleaner, more pure, it needs to be preserved; we must take care of nature so that it takes care of us,” Pope Francis says.

He concludes in his video message on YouTube, “I wish you great success during this meeting. What a wonderful idea to meet together; I’ll be with you every step of the way. Thank you very much.”