7 Stunning Facts About How Climate Change Is Hitting Africa Hardest
While it’s contributed the least to climate change, Africa is being hit the hardest by its effects.
The climate crisis is code red for humanity, but especially so for the African continent.
Increasing temperatures, a surge in natural disasters, locust invasions, floods, and drought. It sounds like the stuff of nightmares. But these extreme events are happening right now as a direct result of climate change and they’re threatening all areas of life across Africa.
Although climate change is affecting the whole continent, it’s not affecting all regions in the same way. While millions of people are affected by flooding each year in Nigeria, rising temperatures in North Africa are leading to drought, which is devastating for farmers in the region.
Perhaps the most unfair fact about the entire situation is that Africa is responsible for less than 4% of global greenhouse gas emissions — a minuscule proportion when you consider that the richest 10% of the world’s population are responsible for over half of carbon emissions. Yet, Africa is the most vulnerable region in the world to the changing climate, according to the UN’s Environment Programme.
Wealthier nations — which have contributed the most to climate change — have got to step up to support African countries in adapting to and planning for climate change, as well as paying for the loss and damage it’s already incurred. Are they doing it? The short answer is: no.
Over 12 years ago, the world’s richest countries promised to deliver $100 billion every year from 2020 to 2025 to climate finance (money to help lower-income countries most affected by climate change adapt to its effects). But they've fallen short of their pledges, saying that the promised funding now likely won't be delivered until 2023.
Climate change and extreme weather events are hitting Africa the hardest — despite the continent having contributed the least to cause it.
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