In Today’s COP28 Press briefing, U.S Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, discussed the strategies that the United States plans to employ to support and engage in the fight against climate change in African countries, including Rwanda. Kerry acknowledged the significant impact that climate change has had on Africa, stating that the continent bears an enormous brunt of the crisis while being the least contributor to the problem.
Kerry highlighted the extreme floods experienced by countries like Somalia, Ethiopia, and Kenya, as well as the devastating drought that left millions of people without secure access to food over the past three years.
To address these challenges, President Biden launched the Presidents’ Emergency Plan for Adaptation and Resilience, which aims to directly assist half a billion people in developing countries, particularly in Africa, to adapt to the worst climate impacts.
Additionally, the United States is working towards the establishment of a loss and damage fund that will serve the needs of the developing world.
Kerry expressed confidence that the measures and initiatives being taken globally will significantly address the needs of Africa.
The United States is currently the largest donor in the African-led and African-conceived African Adaptation Initiative.
He said that “During the Africa Climate Summit in Nairobi, the United States announced new funding to advance adaptation and accelerate climate-resilient food security initiatives across Africa.”
The country intends to be a strong partner for African countries in their efforts to adapt to climate impacts.
Furthermore, Kerry emphasized the importance of developing alternative renewable clean energy choices for African countries, rather than relying solely on fossil fuels.
To make these options more accessible, the United States plans to work with the World Bank to establish new finance structures that will facilitate cheaper lending for renewable energy projects.
Kerry also mentioned exploring nature-based solutions and debt-for-swaps arrangements to support the transition towards sustainable development in Africa.
Overall, Kerry expressed optimism about the potential impact of these new initiatives and pledged the United States’ commitment to being a strong partner for African countries in their fight against climate change.
With a focus on adaptation, resilience, and renewable energy, the United States aims to support sustainable economic progress in Africa while addressing the urgent challenges posed by climate change.