Climate change is, indeed, one of the major defining issues of our time. It is regarded as one of the greatest threats to humanity. It has been a recurring decimal in most national, regional, and international fora. Climate change’s effects, such as more frequent natural disasters, long-term changes in precipitation and temperature, and rising sea levels, among other things, have far-reaching consequences for increasing the risk, prevalence, duration, or intensity of conflicts.
As a result of the pressure placed on nations’ economic, social, and political systems, it is becoming increasingly clear that climate change is a development, economic, health, and security risk, i.e. a human and national security risk.
Climate change is posing a number of challenges for Africa, including floods and drought, which are threatening food security, social well-being, and economic development in many African countries. Climate change has also resulted in significant shifts in growing seasons as well as increased dry spells with heavy rainfall which has aided in the spread of vector-borne diseases. Unfortunately, a rising debt burden, economic insecurity, violent conflicts, and a deeply inequitable global financial and trade system have all hampered Africa’s ability to respond.
Climate change significantly impacts human security in the following areas:
- Competition over limited and scarce natural resources, like in food prices and food insecurity
- Undermine livelihoods and can further exacerbate criminality.
- Also, in the face of stressed livelihoods, limited social capacity and lack of social safety nets, these can trigger displacement and migration.
This has become a challenge for most African countries, as young people seek greener pastures in Europe, despite the risks involved. Indeed, Africa remains one of the most vulnerable continents as a result of the impact of climate change, which is a major impediment to Africa achieving sustainable development goals. It is noteworthy that 17 of the 20 most vulnerable countries are found in Africa, despite the fact that Africa contributes only 4% of global carbon dioxide emissions.
On this note AAIPSDS work in this sector will be aligned towards the following:
- Collaborate with partners, think-tank centres for Disaster Risk Management & Development, allied organisations, and government and non-governmental organisations to undertake capacity building and research to enhance the capacities of professionals to respond and mitigate the impact of climate change.
- Organise policy dialogue to impact policy and practice
- Work with relevant stakeholders within communities to enhance their resilience to climate change