Vice President Nangolo Mbumba says given Namibia’s vulnerability, the country is deeply committed to action in terms of both climate change adaptation and mitigation.
Mbumba who addressed the 33rd Ordinary Session of the African Union over the weekend said Cabinet approved in 2015 Namibia’s Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) which lays out the ambitious targets to mitigate and adapt to climate change by 2030.
Namibia takes climate change issues seriously and the submission of the INDC is a clear testimony that the country is committed to fighting climate change. To this end, Namibia has put in place policies and strategies to deal with the adverse impacts of climate change.
“We continue to do our utmost to facilitate and accelerate investment and intervention in these areas so that we have a future that is climate-resilient and food, water and energy secure,” Mbumba said.
According to him, on climate change, it is important to note the undeniable truth that Africa will be hardest hit by climate change but has contributed the least to causing that change.
He attributed this to various reasons such as African society is very closely integrated with the climate system and hundreds of millions of people depend on rainfall to grow their food.
Secondly, he added the African climate system is controlled by an extremely complex mix of large-scale weather systems, and in comparison, with almost all other inhabited regions, is vastly understudied.
“It is, therefore, capable of all sorts of surprises. Thirdly, the degree of expected climate change is large and the two most extensive land-based end-of-century projected decreases in rainfall anywhere on the planet occur over Africa; one over North Africa and the other over southern Africa,” Mbumba stated. Further, he said climate change events have manifested mostly in a form of drought and floods in Namibia.
Namibia endured recurrent drought conditions since 2013.
From October 2018 to May 2019, Namibia experienced its driest rainfall season in 38 years, resulting in a severe drought that has left 500,000 people – one in five Namibians – food insecure.
He said at least 60 000 domestic animals have died in the past six months.
Agriculture in Namibia depends on both livestock and crop production.
Hence, Mbumba reasoned both of these industries are extremely vulnerable to the unforgiving climatic conditions such as drought and floods, including concomitant events such as pests and disease outbreaks.
“As a government, we have declared a state of emergency - the second in three years - over the situation. We have set aside a dedicated budget for emergency measures to procure food and water tanks, and to transport livestock to and from grazing areas,” he indicated.
2020-02-13 07:12:06 | 5 months ago