COP28: World leaders urged to tackle climate change financing amid droughts, floods

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By James Muonwa l Mashonaland West Correspondent

UNRELENTING droughts and floods, among other weather conditions, witnessed in recent years owing to climate change need a holistic funding mechanism to deal with the global phenomenon, an environmental expert has said.

Speaking ahead of the Thursday kickoff of the climate conference, COP28, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Carbon Green Africa managing director, Charles Ndondo, said the dire effects of climate change were taking a toll on the world’s population in the wake of changing rainfall patterns which have resulted in recurrent droughts and devastating floods, and other catastrophes.

The 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference, more commonly referred to as COP28 runs from November 30 to December 12 at the Expo City, Dubai, UAE.

Ndondo said world leaders, particularly those of powerful nations, must escalate talks to boost funding towards climate change reduction.

“This is a critical time for the whole world when we are faced with the realities of climate change. Droughts, floods, cyclones and other adverse weather effects have ravaged communities and the trend is unabating.

“Therefore, as nations gather for COP28, world leaders must take a more practical approach to raising climate finance, and jerk the private sector to join the fight to mitigate the negative impacts of the phenomenon,” said Ndondo.

Some large corporations, which have a huge carbon footprint such as car manufacturers, have been lagging in meaningfully participating in climate change mitigation initiatives.

“COP28 presents an opportunity for governments, environmental conversation and preservation experts, top executives and other stakeholders involved in climate action to reflect and find ways as to how they can tackle climate change financing with a view to increasing private players’ involvement,” he said.

The government of Zimbabwe, through the Ministry of Environment, Climate and Wildlife, has swiftly enacted laws and regulations governing private players’ participation in the climate finance space, particularly the carbon credit trading arena.

“On the domestic front, our government has realised the critical role played by private players and hence has brought on board stakeholders in order to align deliverables in line with the Second Republic’s vision.

“Zimbabwe is promoting private-public partnership (PPP) agreements under the mantra ‘leave no one and no place behind’, even on climate change issues. There are quite several local players interested in carbon credit trading schemes.”

Such entities, which include Carbon Green Africa and Kariba REDD+ were recently invited to regularise their current operations. The window period to have done so was closed on October 31, 2023.

In recent years, Zimbabwe, as a part of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has taken tremendous strides to align itself with climate mitigation objectives.

UNFCCC’s guiding principles are responsibility; reduction of overall climate impact, education for climate action, promotion of sustainable and responsible consumption, and advocacy for climate action through communication.