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Ethiopia Calls For Unified African Voice In Climate Change Battle At AMCEN

The Ethiopian government has issued a clarion call for a united African stance in the global fight against climate change.

Demeke Mekonnen, the Deputy Prime Minister of Ethiopia, who also serves as the country’s Foreign Affairs Minister, delivered this message during the closing ceremony of the 19th African Ministerial Conference on Environment (AMCEN) held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital.

Mekonnen emphasized that climate change exerts profound impacts on diverse systems across Africa and poses a significant obstacle to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Agenda 2063.

Furthermore, she detailed Ethiopia’s ambitious NDC, which includes a 68% emission reduction target, 40 adaptation measures, and a government commitment of 20% of the financial resources required to implement the provisions outlined in the document.

Assefa drew attention to the alarming rate of biodiversity loss, even though frameworks to mitigate this crisis have been adopted by countries.

She also highlighted the escalating pollution of oceans with plastic waste, despite countries striving to establish ambitious targets for plastic production and use.

Additionally, Assefa pointed out that toxic chemicals and hazardous waste continue to be generated, despite efforts to secure legally binding agreements to regulate them.

Emphasizing the extreme vulnerability of Africans to climate change, she reaffirmed Ethiopia’s dedication to implementing the Green Legacy Initiative.

As part of this initiative, Ethiopia aims to mobilize over 35 million people to plant more than half a billion tree seedlings in a single day.

Simon Stiell, the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, acknowledged the commendable efforts of many African countries in setting ambitious targets within their NDCs, despite confronting numerous development challenges.

Stiell stressed the imperative need for transparent, equitable, and simplified access to climate finance, particularly for the continent’s most vulnerable countries.

He also called for increased investments in climate-resilient infrastructure, renewable energy, and sustainable agriculture as essential components of Africa’s response to climate change.

He underscored that confronting climate change and fostering sustainable development is a shared responsibility, both at the continental and global levels.

“Uniting in the battle against climate change and sustainable development is, therefore, a collective continental and global duty,” Mekonnen stated.

Also addressing the gathering, Fitsum Assefa, Ethiopia’s Minister of Planning and Development, noted that AMCEN occurred at a pivotal juncture, with climate change now constituting an urgent global emergency.

Assefa reiterated the Ethiopian government’s unwavering commitment to endorsing global multilateral environmental agreements and embracing national policies and strategies for development.

She disclosed that Ethiopia had submitted an updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

Dare Akogun

Dare Akogun is a dynamic media innovator, strategic communication professional, and seasoned climate and environmental sustainability journalist with over 10 years of influential contributions to the media industry.

He Currently serving as the Head of Digital Media, Senior News Editor, and a presenter at Sobi FM 101.9, a leading radio station in Ilorin, Nigeria.

Dare is on a mission to leverage his media innovation expertise and project management skills to produce high-quality, accurate, and engaging content, while advocating for reduced fossil fuel consumption, especially coal, to combat effect of global warming.

He has covered comprehensively environmental issues and COP conferences, including COP28 in Dubai last year , COP 27 in Egypt, and the United Nations Least Developed Countries conference in Doha, in 2023.

He is a recipient of fellowship to be part of a 15 team of journalists selected worldwide to cover the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue 2024.

He has a Master's Degree in Mass Communication, from the University of Lagos, a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from the Lagos State University and also a
Certification in Business Administration and Management, from the Babson College, Massachusetts, United States of America.

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