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Pan African Climate Justice Alliance lauds the Ministry of Environment in Kenya for acknowledging the voices of vulnerable groups in the review of National Climate Change Action plan. Indigenous groups like Pastoralists, Women and children are most affected by climate change and their views should be in mitigation and adaptation action plans.

CS Keriako Tobiko noted that gender mainstreaming was crucial in formulation of climate change action plans adding that it was imperative to enlist the views of the most vulnerable groups in the community as they held the highest stakes in the phenomenon.

The Environment and Forest CS was speaking when he was presented with a zero draft report of the National climate change action plan proposed for 2018-2022, by an Inter-Ministerial, multi-sectoral task force.

The task force was urged to include views of the most vulnerable groups in society including pastoralist communities during the planned county consultations across the country.

We welcome this great step and encourage other stakeholders in the media and faith- based organizations to join in these task force to drive advocacy and awareness creation.

The National Action Plan will go through a National Validation, parliamentary scrutiny and once approved by the climate change council chaired by the President will be adopted.

MS Training Centre for Development Corporation in Eastern and Southern Africa (MS TCDC) together with partners met in Arusha, Tanzania from the 2 - 7 April 2018 to deliberate on the African agenda and to find continent - based solutions where challenges have been experienced. The conference theme was multifaceted conversations in Africa and discussions dwelt on leadership, the illicit financial flows, land issues, Inequality, Green Living and the role of Swahili language in East Africa regional integration. These conversations formed part of MS TCDC commemoration of 50th anniversary since its inception. At the end of the week, participants and the public would appreciate the ‘state of play’ in respect to these selected development and policy issues.

MS-TCDC in collaboration with Pan-African Climate Justice Alliance and EndaSolar, hosted Green Living Day as part of multifaceted conversation within the 6-days series of coordinated, but informal dialogues aimed at promoting reflection and action toward locally feasible solutions to local domestic concerns.

East Africa and Africa at large continues to face a double pronged challenge of expanding economic opportunities for all in the context of a growing global population and addressing environmental pressures that come with economic development. The challenge of environmental pressure is so crucial that when left unaddressed will undermines the opportunities that have been provided for by economic development. Green growth and green living is where these two challenges meet and it is about exploiting the opportunities to actualize these two. 

Speaking at the event, Mr. Ezra Mbogo, the Executive Director at MS TCDC in his welcoming remarks was categorical on the need to go back and embrace our root. “Mother Nature is crucial and important to our survival and the more we don’t interfere with it the more it will serve us. Let us embrace green living and ensure that our actions don’t deplete the environment further. It all starts with us.’’

On the Green living day, conversations revolved around evaluating key African Climate Change Response Initiatives specifically Gasification (Thermal Power) using Prosopis Juliflora in transitioning to Low-carbon Energy in Kenya, Solar Energy opportunities for Green Living and the role of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) on mobilization and advocacy on Green Living in East Africa.

Green living is the practice of reducing demand on natural resources and reducing carbon footprint at various levels. It offers an opportunity for people to adopt actions for sustainable living that can help them to reduce their carbon footprint or environmental impact by altering their lifestyle. It is an opportunity for people to adopt actions for sustainable living that can help them to reduce their carbon footprint or environmental impact by altering their lifestyle. Simple measures like using public transportation more often, reducing energy consumption, becoming more eco-friendly can go a long way in reducing your environmental impact and making this planet a clean and safe place. Green living revolves around micro and macro choices on energy and water consumption, liquid and solid waste disposal and modes of transportation among others.

 

Why Green Living is should be central in our lives

Green growth means fostering economic growth and development while ensuring that natural assets continue to provide the resources and environmental services on which our well-being relies. Green growth refers to development that improves human well-being and builds social equity while reducing environmental risks and scarcities. Green growth is an alternative to today's dominant economic model, which exacerbates inequalities, encourages waste, triggers resource scarcities, and generates widespread threats to the environment and human health.

Green growth is centered on the principles of sharing, circularity, collaboration, solidarity, resilience, opportunity, and interdependence. Green growth provides a practical and flexible approach for achieving concrete, measurable progress across its economic and environmental pillars, while taking full account of the social consequences of greening the growth dynamic of economies. The focus of green growth strategies is ensuring that natural assets can deliver their full economic potential on a sustainable basis. 

From the conversations, we all sat down and agreed that, Environmental protection is our responsibility thus we must adopt lifestyle habits that protect it and promote Green living. We also recognized the role non- state actors play to influence policies to ensure development sustainability and foster synergy and collaboration between all sectors of economy to promote Green energy development.

Pan African Climate Justice Alliance(PACJA) in partnership with Caritas Kitui is holding a consultative workshop with stakeholders from Kitui County on participatory scenario planning (PSP). The objective of the workshop is to integrate various sources of climate/weather information for the upcoming March to May (MAM) long rainy season. This workshop brings together various stakeholders in the county among them; the County meteorological department, Ministry of agriculture, Traditional weather forecasters, the agriculture sector development support programs, the National Drought Management Authority, community members, agro-pastoralist, amongst others. At the end of the workshop, advisories will be developed based on agro-ecological zones and communicated to farmers so that they can make informed decisions around the risk and uncertainty associated with the MAM rainy season.

Speaking at the meeting, Mr. Patrick Ndovoi, Planning and Budget Officer from the Ministry of Agriculture, Kitui County, stated that it is very important for climate information to be shared at the local level, as it provides crucial information that the communities needs to guide them in  their planning and decision making. Impacts from the last harvest season are already being felt as rains were not received as expected.   

Mr. Eric Kaindi, Planning, Policy and Monitoring Officer from the livestock department in the county reiterated that the community is facing food insecurity due to failed rains in the last planting season, and are now turning to the livestock for survival. This has caused a strain to the already deteriorated environmental resources as they put more pressure to the land because of overgrazing. The livestock are also fetching low prices in the market due to poor health hence not solving the crisis.

“The current climate in the county requires more techniques of production to avoid food insecurity, such as producing livestock feeds for sale.’’ He concluded.

Climate change is arguably the most severe challenge facing our planet in the 21st century. Human interference with the climate system (mainly through the emission of greenhouse gases and changes in land use) has increased the global and annual mean air temperature at the Earth's surface by about 0.8 °C since the 19th century

Kenya, like other African countries, is experiencing the brunt of climate change impacts and the associated socio-economic losses. The situation is exacerbated by the high dependence on climate sensitive natural resources. Over the past decade, droughts have become more severe and frequent, having a negative effect on all rural households and especially those in the arid and semi-arid lands. In counties like Embu, Kitui and Tharaka Nithi counties, the short rain season starts later and the long rains are very unreliable. This has led to extreme poverty and inequality in these regions. Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) is seeks to engage stakeholders including policy makers in these three counties to develop climate change policies that take Natural Resource Management into consideration.

A two day consultative workshop in Tharaka Nithi County has been organized by the PACJA team to build the capacity of county stakeholders on the existing gaps in the current climate change policies,  and also have a chance to validate the Ecosystem Based Adaptation research that was conducted in county recently.

Speaking at the consultative forum, Hon. Margaret Gitari, Member of the County Assembly for Chogoria and the chairperson of the Environmental committee in Tharaka Nithi County in her opening remarks lauded PACJA, Caritas Meru, policy makers  and other stakeholders for choosing to partner with Tharaka Nithi County to develop this climate change policy. ‘This meeting is very critical and timely for the people of this country. The outcome will enable us address climate change stresses and shocks by strengthening the resilience of the community and ensuring that we are on a path to food security. The county government will support this process and ensure that it is passed once it gets to the house.’ She said.

This climate policy formulation process is supported by Trocaire and UKAM for the Community resilience and climate change adaptation project implemented by PACJA.

 

 

BONN, Germany (PAMACC News) - African civil society groups and climate activists have called for extensive clarifications on how African countries and especially indigenous grassroots communities can access funding to adapt to climate change and pursue green growth.

“African governments and especially vulnerable indigenous communities need access to climate funds. These funds are needed for climate adaptation, mitigation and technology transfer, capacity building and forest management,” says Julius Karanja, Programme assistant,Pan African Climate Justice Alliance,PACJA at a side event on GCF/CSO readiness in Bonn,November 8th , 2017.

“But accessing these funds by African countries and indigenous communities is still an uphill tasks and we think COP23 is the place for the right decisions and engagements to be taken,’’ Julius said.

Other African representatives said climate impacts are multiplying in many developing nations underlining the need to protect vulnerable states from rising risks of extreme weather.

“We listen and watch with horror weather extremes in many African and Asian countries and we know that the impacts of climate change are ravaging mostly the vulnerable grassroots communities with attendant loss of lives, property and means of livelihood. Accessing finances for adaptation in these countries have become very urgent, thus the need for flexibility, and clarity on the Green Climate Fund process” said  Jean Paul Brice Affana, Policy Advisor, Climate Finance and Development, German Watch.

African Civil society say for this to happen, a multi-stakeholder mobilization and participation in the Green Climate Fund process is imperative.

According to Dr. Curtis Deobbler, representative, International Youth and Student Movement for the United Nations, participation of the different stakeholders in the Green Climate Fund process will not only ensure transparency but will provide the opportunity for full engagement of grassroots communities via civil society organizations.

“Though the Green Climate Change Fund promises to be the most ambitious in the fight against climate change, there is need to ensure total transparency and equity in access to the funds. This can best be ensured with the participation of grassroots communities, represented by civil society, at all levels of the process,” Curtis said.

He said there is need to recognize the role of civil society in accountability at national level where they consult with implementing entities and are versed with local best practices.

The Green Climate Fund (GCF) accordingly is intended to be the major conduit for funding to flow from wealthy economies built on fossil fuels to those that will suffer most from climate change they did not cause. Experts say it aims at being the most ambitious step in the fight against climate change.

 “It is a very important step forward in the global effort to fight climate change,” Dr. Curtis Deobbler said.
Many developing countries have indicated that their commitments to cut emissions are conditional on support from wealthy nations but the funds are coming at a very slow pace, the African civil society has said. The developed world has agreed that poor countries should receive $100bn a year by 2020, but have so far pledged just $10.2bn to the GCF, the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance, PACJA noted.

The COP23 in Bonn, CSOs say, is expected to be more about UN house-keeping than grandstanding with many of its conclusions being technical and businesslike, designed to make the process of cutting greenhouse gas emissions work better, rather than announcing new goals or targets.

They called on the UNFCCC to recognize the role of the civil society in accountability and the need to get them participate at all levels of the process, as the voice of the grassroots communities.

The Pan African Climate Justice Alliance in collaboration with Climate for Development in Africa (ClimDev-Africa) consortium - a partnership of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the African Union Commission (AUC) and the African Development Bank (AfDB), will in October organize the 7th Climate Change and Development in Africa Conference (CCDA-VII). 

The conference will be hosted in Nairobi, Kenya starting October 11 to October 13, 2017, with the theme this year being: Implementation of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) in Africa: From Policies to Action.

This year, CCDA is expected to attract 400-500 participants. Specific constituencies expected to attend from within and outside of Africa include researchers, academia, policy makers, parliamentarians, negotiators, development partners, intergovernmental organizations, media professionals, Multilateral Development Banks, the private sector, civil society, and youth and gender groups.

The meeting aims to critically examine the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) of African countries and Africa’s readiness to translate NDCs into actionable development plans and programmes, assess the effectiveness of mechanisms to provide adequate means of implementation to meet the required levels of ambition; and examine global political economy issues for the effective implementation of NDCs in support of sustainable, inclusive and climate-resilient development on the continent.

CCDA-VII will be organized into five sub-themes constituting the “the 5 ‘Is’ of implementing the Paris Agreement in Africa” – Intentions, Interests, Issues, Investments, and Inventory

Click here for more information on the conference.

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