The Deputy Environment, Science Technology and Innovation Minister has stressed the need for concerted efforts in the fight against the effects of climate change.

Patricia Appiagyei believes only a joint collaboration from all West African states will bring about the kind of results needed to avert or manage the impacts of climate change in the Sub-Saharan region.

“The magnitude of the threat that climate change poses to the survival of humanity demands a collective action to address the challenges of increasing global warming.

“Working together presents us with the opportunity of regional integration for concerted action and also the opportunity to lip frog technology and financing,” she said.

Mrs Appiageyi was speaking at the 3rd West African Science Services Centre on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) Ministerial Council Meeting in Accra.

The meeting is part of the periodic gathering of sector ministers within the WASCAL member states in West Africa. Per the constitution, the Ministerial Council is the highest organ of the institution and its meeting is geared towards deepening the relationships among the country members on one side and between them and the German partner at the policy-making levels.

Mrs Appiagyei in a photograph with German Federal Minister of Education and Research Anja Karliczek (M)

The event is under the auspices of the Ministry of Environment Science Technology and Innovation on the theme, “Deepening Partnerships between German and West African Policy Makers towards the realization of Sustainable Development Goal 13 on Climate Action”.

The Council Meeting is designed to showcase strategies by Policy Makers in ensuring a sustainable fight against the climate change challenge in the sub-Region.

On the steps Ghana is taking to deal with climate change, the Deputy Minister said while it is essential to partner sister countries in the fight, little changes in individual countries can contribute significantly to the collective efforts.

Mrs Appaigyei said government is contributing its part to the Paris global climate accord by implementing programmes aimed at promoting renewable energy.

“We have invested nearly $20 million in the savanna drylands to provide access to water to vulnerable farmers in the long dry season. Through the sustainable water and land management, women are being supported with improved livelihood activities and the protection and management of land which is a key economic resource in rural Ghana.

“We have established 192,000 hectares of tree plantation and recently employed over 20,000 youth to plant about 10 million seedlings, distributed 1.2 million clean cooking stoves to households. We have developed a plastic policy that aims to deal with the whole value chain of plastic use,” she said.

The Deputy Minister who is also Asokwa MP commended WASCAL for the pivotal role it is playing to combat climate change

“We all know that climate change does not know borders and climate change science requires enormous investments that may not be economical for one country to undertake alone.


H.E Attanasso (M) in a group photograph with some members of WASCAL

“An institution such as WASCAL must, therefore, be supported and sustained to finance regional efforts for our collective benefit.”

She pledged her ministries continuous support to WASCAL in the quest to control climate change.

Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research of Benin and President of the Council of Ministers of WASCAL, Marie Odile Attanasso praised WASCAL for the tremendous work it has done in the face of many challenges.

“I, therefore, take this opportunity to pay a special tribute to all those who, explicitly or implicitly, have contributed through their ingenuity, generosity and wisdom to keep WASCAL operational, productive and visible in the West African landscape and beyond.

“I am thinking of the students who have passed through the doctoral schools, the African and German researchers, the various Executive Directors who have succeeded one another at the head of the organization, the members of the Scientific Advisory Board, the members of the Board of Directors and you, ladies and gentlemen of the Council of Ministers,” she said.

Attanasso also recognized the immense contribution of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), whose financial and technical support has been the cement that has kept this beautiful entity functional and efficient. 

On climate change, the President said the situation requires a strong political decision which in turn requires great solidarity and frank international collaboration.

“This challenge is all the greater for sub-Saharan areas in that many serious studies indicate a spatially variable progressive warming reaching 0.5°C per decade in recent years.”

“This situation requires a strong political decision, which in turn requires great solidarity and frank international collaboration,” H.E. Attanasso added.

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