Environmentalists hopeful Africa can reduce its dependence on fossil fuels

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Some environmentalists have expressed the hope that Africa can reduce its dependence on fossil fuels and capitalise on its abundant natural resources like solar, wind, and gas.

Currently, 52% of the continent is dependent on fossil fuels.

The recent African Ministerial Conference on the Environment in Addis Ababa in Ethiopia saw countries on the continent coming together to strengthen Africa’s collective solutions and commitments to climate change and reducing plastic pollution.

Daudi Sumba is the World Wildlife Fund’s Regional Director for East and Southern Africa.

“Africa is rapidly industrialising and its carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions will continue to increase. What we hope then (is) that Africa is moving to recognise our role. We also have a role to play in mitigation. Adaptation is the biggest thing for us because now we are suffering the impact, but where we are going and in the long term we have to balance the two.”

South Africa was part of discussions through Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, Barbara Creecy.

Acting director of communications at the department, Peter Mbelengwa, says, “The minister remarked that it was critical that the UNFCCC Cop28 accelerate work on reducing vulnerabilities to climate change impacts and deliver on key mandates such as the operationalization of the global goal of adaptation, and the loss and damage fund, the mitigation work programme and the adoption of the modalities for the work and scope for a just transition.”

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