October 25, 2010

New Green Fund on the Cards for Africa

An African Development Bank proposal to establish a much needed Africa Green Fund was supported by several African governments at the Seventh African Development Forum.

The recently proposed fund is designed to receive and manage a range of resources allocated to Africa, not least the fast-track financing and long-term pledges made under the Copenhagen Accord to finance projects and programs that contribute to climate-resilience and low- carbon development in the African continent.

Ministers from Uganda, Malawi, Kenya, Zimbabwe, DR Congo and Cote D’Ivoire, among others, appeared keen to endorse the Bank’s proposal to host the fund. While there are already over 20 climate funds operating internationally, Africa presently has access only to a few and has only a handful of projects registered under Kyoto’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM). Most of the African CDM projects are also concentrated in South Africa. Latin America and Asian countries – particularly India and China – already boast hundreds of CDM projects.

Architects of the Africa Green Fund claim that Africa’s unique challenges and the huge financing gap on the continent were among the reasons thfor creating the Fund

“The Congo basin forest is the second largest rain forest in the world. Some people do not know the good we are doing by preserving it,” said Mr. Nyong, one of the architects of the Fund. He further suggested that the developed world had to assist to ensure that local communities were not forced to exploit the Congo forest unsustainably for reasons of basic economic livelihoods.

According to Nyong, the African Green Fund will balance climate change mitigation alongside climate change adaption initiatives.

The hope of many African countires now is that the African Development Fund can be fast-tracked for a laucnh at COP 16 in Cancun, Mexico, during December 2010.

Sources: African Development Bank Group www.afdb.org



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