‘Economies vulnerable to climate change’
ADDIS ABABA. — Africa’s core economic sectors are highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate variability and change, says Mr James Murombedzi, officer-incharge of the Economic Commission for Africa’s African Climate Policy Centre.
At the beginning of a two-day training of trainers workshop in Addis Ababa, Mr Murombedzi said it was crucial for the continent to mainstream climate information services into development policy, plans and processes.
He added unless Africa develops a strong, scientific understanding of the impacts of the changing weather and climate patterns on its vital sectors and how this will change in the future, the continent’s sustainable development agenda was at risk.
“With effective climate information services, our climate-sensitive sectors will be able to cope better with increased variability, bringing greater agricultural and other productivity while building resilience and improving livelihoods across the continent,” said Mr Murombedzi.
He underscored that accurate and accessible climate information, for example rainfall and wind information, helps farmers decide not only when to plant and harvest, but when to dry their crops, and when to look out for pests and disease outbreaks that can ruin yields.
“Working with information in this way, farmers increase their chances of boosting productivity and avoiding post-harvest losses,” Mr Murombedzi said, adding that meeting these needs was the focus of this emerging field called climate information and services, which aims to bridge the gap between climate science, policy and practice for adaptation decision-making and disaster resilience. The ACPC boss was addressing 26 instructors from African parliaments, media training institutions, civil society, youth and regional training institutes attending the ToT on mainstreaming climate information services into development policy, plans and processes.
The training of trainers workshop was a collaborative initiative between ECA, the United Nations Institute for Training and Research and the African Institute of Economic Development and Planning under the framework of the Weather Information and Climate Services initiative. — Economic Commission for Africa
It is crucial for the continent to mainstream climate information services into development policy, plans and processes