African ministers to prioritise climate change - CNBC Africa

African ministers to prioritise climate change

Special Report

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African ministers to prioritise climate change. PHOTO:

Leaders and ministers across the region will attend the African Ministerial Conference on Meteorology (AMCOMET) from the 13 to 14 February 2015 in Cape Verde, to discuss the use of weather and climate services that will help the continent cope with shocks caused by extreme weather and climate change.

“The global warming trend continued in 2014, resulting in heat-waves, flooding and droughts. The first weeks of this year have been marked by flooding in Malawi and Mozambique and a deadly tropical cyclone in Madagascar,” said World Meteorological Organization (WMO) secretary-general Michel Jarraud.

“Africa is extremely vulnerable to the increasing impacts of climate change, which will worsen food insecurity and water stress for the continent’s growing population.”

(READ MORE: Have we lost the battle against climate change?)

He added that national meteorological and hydrological services in Africa are vital to public safety and well-being as they enable sustainable development and are indispensable partners of economic sectors like agriculture, health and water management.

“They should receive the resources and recognition necessary to fulfil their mandates. This would save the continent millions of dollars and many, many lives,” said Jarraud.

Institutional frameworks however differ from country to country, resulting in insufficient cooperation and operational policies.

(READ MORE: Climate change worsens food insecurity and diseases in Africa )

The AMCOMET session will therefore discuss the implementation of the integrated African strategy for Meteorology and will also decide on the establishment of a regional climate centre for Central Africa to consolidate researching and forecasting capabilities.

WMO added that members will also consider input from the meteorological community to a pan-African Space Policy and Strategy.