August 6, 2014

THE IPCC’S FIFTH ASSESSMENT REPORT

The IPCC Conference in this report was held on 31st July - 1st August 2014 at the Safari Park hotel. Organizations present included; PACJA, KCCWG, Ministry of environment and natural resources, KEMRI, Kenya Meteorological Service, Kenya Association of Manufacturers and us (AYICC-Kenya).

Theme: What does it mean for Kenya’s development?

The IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) works to produce the most comprehensive assessment reports on climate change across the globe. The reports review the scientific evidence on the trends and causes of climate change, the risks to human and natural systems and options for adaptation and mitigation. The IPCC has working groups that published the reports for the Fifth Assessment Report. These groups are:
  • Working Group 1(physical Science of Climate Change)
  • Working Group2 (Impacts, Adaptation and vulnerability)
  • Working Group3(Climate Change mitigation)
Adaptation of climate change is a priority while its mitigation is considered a long-term process when it comes to climate change impacts. Some of the discussion points of the meeting included:
  • Kenya’s climate change pathway, vulnerability, trends and impacts
  • Best practices in building climate resilience and climate change adaptation
  • Kenya’s low carbon climate resilient development opportunities
  • How to pay for climate action.
It has been found that 76% of people in Kenya only wait for the government to act on climate change. Both the community and the government have a big role to play in adapting and mitigating climate change. Indicators of climate change include temperature rise, decrease in annual rainfall trends, and change in seasonal rainfall patterns.etc

The common impacts of climate change are poverty, insufficient energy, limited food, insecurity, conflict of resources, economic insecurity, increased migration, compromise of culture and identity, increase in waterborne diseases, increased rate of mortality and morbidity and shift in patterns of disease carrying mosquitoes and ticks among others.

The elderly, physically challenged, women, children and the youth are more vulnerable to climate change impacts. The community has more to say than it can do. The youth have been urged to act and also speak out on matters arising from climate change as they are important stakeholders. The public opinion should influence policy. There are so many activities that the youth can engage in adapting and mitigating climate change. These may include:
  • Seeking equitable services
  • Organizing of community based networks
  • Engaging in decision making
  • Demand for government action
  • Involvement in national and international opportunities

    Best practices learnt/proposed for building climate change resilience were:
  1. Low carbon development has been noticed in Kenya thus people are turning out to use methane
  2. There should be a great way of having information disseminated so that it could reach people in large numbers
  3. Important milestones should be introduced. For example the various environmental awards like NETFUND
  4. Introduction of environmental programmes in communities as well as programmes.
Key sectors that have been identified to act as development opportunities in adapting and mitigating climate Kenya and Africa at large include the energy, agriculture, forestry, service, infrastructure and water sectors as based on the Kenya Climate Change Action Plan. A lot needs to be done in these sectors as more research work should be done by stakeholders, adjustments should be made and if possible there should be a serious mainstreaming of climate issues at various stages.

The climate risk that has been identified and is killing so many people is Malaria. Warm areas are vulnerable to mosquitoes. This is an area of concern among many African countries which should be addressed and discussed immediately.

Finally, international co-operation is vital to avert dangerous climate change and African government can promote ambitious global action. AYICC Kenya should strive for the best in combating climate change. Participation matters.



Compiled by Sharon Ochieng

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