No. 6 December 1994

Climate Change Studies in Africa

Many African countries are now investigating what climate change means for them: both how climate change might affect their environment, agriculture and economy, and how they can contribute to global efforts to minimise the causes of climate change. Several of these African country studies are being carried out in collaboration with UCCEE, and indeed some have already completed significant parts of their investigations.

The UNEP Greenhouse Gas Abatement Costing Studies project, of which the second phase was completed earlier this year, included country studies of Egypt, Senegal and Zimbabwe – see c2e2 news no. 5. The study is now continuing in a third phase, involving fewer countries, but going into more depth and extending the methodology to more sectors and gases. The African participant in Phase 3 is Zimbabwe, represented by the Southern Centre for Energy and Environment in Harare.

In this issue of c2e2 news we describe two new projects which have been initiated – a regional study embracing four countries in Southern and Eastern Africa, and a study in Burkina Faso. The former study builds on the UNEP GHG costing methodology, and includes Zimbabwe, as well as neighbours Botswana and Zambia, and Tanzania to the north. The organisational structure in the regional study follows that employed in the earlier Zimbabwe project – with non-governmental centres in the respective countries, closely associated to the responsible ministries, and in close collaboration, particularly on methodological development, with the UNEP Centre.

All the projects have the multiple objectives of developing methodology, producing useable results and building capacity in the respective countries. The studies cover countries in different subregions of Africa, and address a wide range of sectoral and regional issues. The experience gained can hopefully assist other African countries, and other developing countries, to fulfil their obligations under the Climate Convention.

As well as brief descriptions of the new projects in Southern Africa and in Burkina Faso, this issue also presents reports from the June Copenhagen Conference on Mitigation Actions and the latest IPCC activities.

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