As Botswana grapples with the abundance of coal deposits in Mamabule for electricity, the world is fast shifting to green energy. Are we caught napping as we fight to mine our coal deposits for export to China and India who are currently the largest exporters of solar appliances? India and China as the worlds’ most populated countries are working hard against time to meet the expectations of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
The Paris Agreement provides the framework we need to respond to climate change. Countries are shifting their attention to how they will implement commitments contained in their National Determined Contributions (NDC’s) and agriculture is mentioned as one that can be transformative in responding to climate change, investments in productive, sustainable and resilient agricultural development and well designed interventions in the agricultural sector cutting across the usual distinction between climate change adaptation and mitigation.
For the Paris Agreement to enter into force 55 countries needed to ratify the agreement and countries representing at least 55percent of global greenhouse gas emissions needed to join. That 78 countries representing more than 58percent of emissions have now officially ratified the agreement, it will go into force this month of November.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that our weather patterns have changed. The heavy rains that we used to experience around September are no more.. Batswana have names for all types of rains as it was custom that come what, pula ya sephai e etla and kgogola moko were the signs that we can start planting. We no longer get pula ya medupe which was the kind that will pour quietly, moderately and long hours. What we get now are extremists such as storms, droughts, heavy rainfall and heat-waves.
As a country we need to apply our minds and take advantage of international initiatives aimed at scaling up support for climate action in the agricultural sector;
- There is Morocco’s Adaptation of African Agriculture where the world’s International Financial Institutions are rapidly scaling up their support.
- United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change parties recently selected climate change champions from Morocco and France to lead a new global agenda on climate action, which will include a strong focus on agriculture, forests, oceans and water, and
- FAO’s working closeness with all actors to ensure member states receive the support they need. FMB