Strengthening the capacity to increase resilience to climate change in West Africa | Side Event COP27

Home to more than 400 million people, West Africa suffers from severe climate-related hazards, which affect communities, livelihoods, and infrastructures and hamper development and economic growth. Coastal areas, which host about one-third of the population in the region and more than half of its gross domestic product (GDP), are particularly vulnerable to climate risks. In 2017 only, coastal erosion, flooding, and environmental degradation caused losses of US$3.8 billion in Benin, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal, and Togo. Current sea-level rise rates are expected to lead to accelerated coastal erosion, flooding in low-lying coastal areas, and increased salinization of soils, and surface and ground waters.

This adds to other challenges, such as urbanization processes that are accelerating around the world, particularly in Africa and Asia. More than half of the world’s population currently lives in urban areas, and by 2050, two-thirds of people are expected to live in cities Although cities may have many advantages, urbanization is not without challenges, from spatial urban development to access to infrastructure, sanitation, transport, and other basic services.

After the pandemic, the global energy crisis has pushed up the prices of energy, food, and other commodities, further putting pressure on African economies. The current situation has exposed not only the need but also the additional benefits of moving towards a transition to low-carbon and resilient societies. Furthermore, the need for a just transition is key to promoting inclusive climate policies and sustainable development.

This side event will focus on sharing practical knowledge and exploring the collaboration between different actors to respond to these challenges and progress toward a climate-resilient and just development.


16:45-16:50Introductory remarks

Maria Jose Sanz, Scientific Director, Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3)

16:50-17:50Multi-stakeholders dialogue (9-10 min each, in total 60 min)
 Michael Mullan, OECD

What are the main opportunities for the transition in Africa?

Mme Karima SALAMA, Secrétaire du conseil de la région Rabat Salé Kenitra

What practices do you know that AIRF can undertake, that can inspire us to move forward?

Ana Rivero, Sustainable Investments Director Santander Wealth Management and Insurance

Climate finance has traditionally been directed at climate mitigation initiatives. However, there is no doubt that adaptation needs to be addressed urgently. What could be the role of the private sector in promoting adaptation practices? What opportunities can it create?

Alvin Chandra, Nature for Climate Branch UNEP

Climate-resilient development: policy solutions and adaptation financial needs for West Africa.

Mr. Moussa Koyaté, President of the Departmental Council of Gossas, Senegal

What are the main challenges and needs at the regional/local level to accelerate action for your region?

Short video Basque Country

17:50-18:10Panel discussion and Q&As
18:10-18:15Closing remarks

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María de Maeztu Excellence Unit 2023-2027 Ref. CEX2021-001201-M, funded by MCIN/AEI /10.13039/501100011033

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