Prioritizing the Climate Change Agenda in Africa

Climate-related shocks have had a large impact on economies in sub-Saharan Africa.  It is estimated that rainfall variability in Zambia will cost the country $4.3 billion in losses to GDP over 10 years.  Sub-Saharan Africa has experienced some very extreme climate events in the past two years.  The Africa region faces heightened challenges due to climate change because a large portion of its agricultural production relies solely on rainfall.

In a recent paper, Brookings Guest Scholar Temesgen Deressa urges African nations to increase their voice and coordination in international climate change negotiations to help prioritize climate adaptation and mitigation policies for the region.

 Read the related paper »

Without action on climate-related shocks, the experts estimate that rain-fed agricultural yields will reduce by half in some African countries by 2020.  Yet, African interests at international climate change conferences are not adequately taken into account.  Temesgen argues that some responsibility lies on African nations to invest more developing the capacity of their delegates, technocrats and bureaucrats.

Read Foresight Africa 2014

, which details the top priorities for Africa in the coming year, to learn more about the impact of climate change on Africa and other critical issues for the region.