Zim drags feet on climate change

HARARE - Zimbabwe has less than a month to ratify the Paris Agreement on climate change, set to come into effect at the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) in November.

So far, 77 of the 197 parties to the convention have signed the Agreement — aimed at reducing carbon emissions as a threat to climate.

The parties are set to benefit from climate change programmes, including funding.

Although Zimbabwe is among the least originators of carbon emissions that have contributed to climate change, the country has suffered a fair share of damage in the form of declining agricultural yields and greater frequency of extreme weather patterns.

The Paris Agreement — will come into effect on November 4 — seeks to keep global temperature rise below two degrees Celsius and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1,5 degrees Celsius.

Additionally, the agreement aims to strengthen the ability of countries to deal with the impact of climate change.

Recently, President Robert Mugabe tasked Parliament to ratify the Agreement.

“The growing incidence of droughts in Zimbabwe presents a clarion call for all of us to build capacity to effectively cope with disasters related to climate change,” he said while officially opening the fourth session of the eighth Parliament.

“Government has embarked on the implementation of climate change adaptation and mitigation programmes throughout the country. This session of Parliament is thus expected to ratify the Paris Agreement, which allows the country to benefit from programmes on climate change,” Mugabe said.

If Zimbabwe decides to slack, it has however, until April 2017 to do so, as the Agreement shall be open for signing by States and regional economic integration organisations — at the United Nations Headquarters in New York — that are parties to the UNFCC on climate change.

On the other hand, it is not just the science and the Paris Agreement that Zimbabweans hopes will solve the climate change crisis, as prayer and rituals have also been put forward.

On the same day that Mugabe tasked Parliament to work on ratifying the Paris Agreement, his deputy, Phelekezela Mphoko, pleaded with traditional and church leaders to pray for better weather.

“I want to make an appeal that all religious and traditional leaders throughout the country let us pray for normal rains,” he said.

“. . .there’s a threat that there are a lot of rains this year, but you remember that floods are a curse please let’s pray for normal rains,” Mphoko said.

In 2018, parties will take stock of the collective efforts in relation to progress towards the goals set in the Paris Agreement and to inform the preparation of nationally determined contributions.

There will also be a global stocktake every five years to assess the collective progress towards achieving the purpose of the Agreement and to inform further individual actions by Parties.

Comments (1)

Climate change is the last thing people are worried about.We don't even have cash in any of our banks & ATM machines.....1st world problem.

Warmbakedbread - 18 October 2016

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