Johannesburg. The United Nations climate agency has warned that Africa’s legendary eastern glaciers will disappear in two decades, 118 million poor people will suffer from drought, floods or extreme heat, and climate change could shrink the continent’s economy by 3 percent by mid-century.
The latest State of the Climate in Africa report released by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and African Union agencies presents a bleak picture of the continent’s ability to adapt to increasingly frequent climate disasters.
The report notes that last year was the third-highest temperature on record in Africa, according to one data set, 0.86°C above the average in the three decades before 2010. Overall, the temperature rose more slowly than in temperate latitudes. . high, but the effect is still devastating.
“The rapid shrinkage of the remaining glaciers in East Africa, which is estimated to completely melt in the near future, shows the risk of … irreversible change in the Earth system,” said Petteri Taalas, Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). Preface to the report.
The report comes at a time when African nations are calling for a new system to monitor the financing of rich nations that fail to meet their annual $100 billion goal to help the developing world tackle climate change.
The request by the lead African climate negotiator, Tanguy Kahma, ahead of the COP26 summit, highlights tensions between the world’s 20 largest economies, which produce more than three-quarters of greenhouse gases, and developing countries, which take the worst part from global warming. .
The document predicts, at the current rate, that the three tropical ice fields in Africa – Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania; Kenya’s Mount Kenya and Uganda’s Rwenzoris – often identified as the site of the mythical Mountains of the Moon – will disappear by 2040.
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