What Catholic Bishops in Eastern Africa Seek to Champion at COP28

Bishop Charles Kasonde delivering the message of Catholic Bishops in the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) region. Credit: AMECEA

Catholic Bishops in the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) region will be advocating for good governance in the extraction of minerals, and operationalization of the Loss and Damage Fund among other issues at the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28).

In a statement read out Thursday, November 30, AMECEA Chairman, Bishop Charles Kasonde, said COP28 “presents an opportunity for a significant shift in how we address the climate crisis.”

“Africa is rich in minerals vital for technology, crucial in the fight against climate change. However, the extraction of these resources often comes with environmental degradation and social injustices,” Bishop Kasonde said, and added, “We advocate for good governance in this sector, ensuring that the benefits are equitably shared and environmental standards are upheld.”

He said that Bishops from Eastern Africa attending the November 30 to December 12 event held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), would champion the “rapid and equitable move away from fossil fuels towards sustainable energy.”

“Transition must be inclusive ensuring no community is left behind,” said the Bishop of Solwezi Diocese in Zambia.


The Zambian Bishop said climate financing and the loss and damage fund need to be operationalized.

“Adequate and fair climate financing is crucial. Developed nations, historically the largest polluters, must bear a significant share of the responsibility in supporting vulnerable countries in their transition to sustainable practices and in coping with impacts of climate change,” he said. 

He added, “I call on all developed nations to support vulnerable countries in adapting to climate impact, operationalizing the loss and damage fund is critical in addressing irreversible damages caused by climate change.”

Bishop Kasonde said AMECEA is “committed to playing a crucial role in this transformation and resuscitation of the environment.”

“The time for action is now. We cannot afford to be remembered for our inaction in the face of urgency,” he said.

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Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.