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La COP27, la conférence annuelle sur les changements climatiques s’ouvre dimanche prochain, à Charm El-Cheihk en Egypte, mais au niveau de l’Alliance Panafricaine pour la Justice Climatique et ses partenaires, c’est tout comme si, c’est déjà aujourd’hui. La marche organisée, ce jour dans les environs du site qui accueille les travaux de la COP27, à quelques jours de l’ouverture, en est la preuve…Didier Hubert MADAFIME, envoyé spécial -PAMACC What do you want ? Climate justice. When do you want ? Now now, littéralement, qu’est-ce que tu veux ? La justice climatique et quand le veux-tu ? Maintenant, maintenant. Le ciel égyptien de Charm El-Cheikh a été déchiré, une partie de la matinée par ce refrain, repris en cœur, en anglais comme en arabe, par les participants à cette marche et risque d’être ainsi, tout au long des travaux de la COP27, à cause de la détermination des organisateurs, mais surtout à cause de la tranche d’âge, de ceux qui y ont pris part. Ils sont jeunes pour la plupart, plus vulnérables aux effets des changements climatiques et donc conscients de l’enjeu. Une marche sous surveillance Un kilomètre pas plus et très encadré par la police égyptienne, la marche s’est achevée au pied du représentant du ministre égyptien de l’environnement Amr ESSAM, qui avait fait preuve d’une grande patience, afin d’écouter les doléances des uns et des autres. Des doléances, il y en avait, des plaintes aussi et des propositions. « De façon globale, les africains ne veulent pas continuer par subir les effets dus aux changements climatiques, sans que quelqu’un ne paye la note ». Et dans la bouche de tous ceux, qui se sont relayés pendant cette séance, le mot le plus important à retenir est l’argent. L’argent pour l’adaptation, pour les pertes et dommages, pour les énergies renouvelables, l’argent pour l’agriculture. Et en même temps, il faut arrêter la production des énergies fossiles afin de limiter les gaz à effet de serre. La doléance la plus poignante est celle du représentant des éleveurs. Leur secteur foudroyé par le réchauffement climatique sombre à petit coup, si ce n’est déjà pas fait et le risque, qu’ils sombrent avec, est une évidence. La COP sur la terre africaine est donc une opportunité de mettre sur la table tous les problèmes liés aux changements climatiques, qui fragilisent le continent. Le document qui fait tout ce point a été remis en mains propres par le Directeur Exécutif de l’Alliance Panafricaine pour la Justice Climatique Mithika Mwenda au représentant du ministre de l’environnement. Tout en reconnaissant la réalité d’un climat qui change, Amr ESSAM ne nie pas aussi la réalité de ses effets et ces dégâts sur le continent africain. « C’est ensemble, a-t-il souligné, que les solutions seront trouvées ». Rendez-vous donc dans deux semaines pour les résultats.
Global warming is likely to cause a decline in the number of species of microbes that live in tropical soils which could threaten the biodiversity of rainforests and increase carbon emissions, according to new research. Microorganisms, which include bacteria and fungi, play a key role in the health of tropical forest ecosystems. They breakdown dead organic matter, either using the carbon it contains and transforming it or release it into the environment as CO2. About a third of the carbon stored in soils is held in tropical soils - and they support around two-thirds of the world’s plant biomass. Climate models suggest the tropics could warm by two to five degrees centigrade by the end of the century. To date, there has been little scientific research into the impact this level of warming could have on the tropical soil microbes that play a key role in plant health and in mediating carbon emissions into the environment. Scientists heat a rainforest to simulate global warming In a ground-breaking experiment on Barro Colorado Island in Panama, an international team of researchers led by the University of Leeds investigated what would happen if tropical soils were exposed to the levels of global warming that are being predicted by climate models. They rigged an underground heating system to warm five experimental plots in a lowland tropical forest which they compared with unheated control plots. Two years after the system was switched on, Dr Andrew Nottingham, a forest ecologist based at Leeds who led the study, said there were two major and unexpected findings. In a paper published in the journal Nature Microbiology, Dr Nottingham and his team report that the biodiversity - or number of species of microbes - in the heated plots declined even though long-standing theory suggests the diversity of bacteria would increase when soil temperature goes up. But the study found that many of the main bacterial and fungal groups in the unheated ‘natural’ plots could not be found in the heated plots, whilst they also identified bacteria and fungi in the heated plots that were not detected in the control plots. Dr Nottingham said: “This research is prompting us to think differently about the way a warmer climate may affect tropical soils, which support some of the world’s richest biodiversity and are a globally important store of carbon. “If the results that we have seen in just two years are representative of what will occur in global tropical soils, then there will be a major negative impact on the rich ecosystems they support. A major question is whether any of the microbes missing in the warmed plots played a key role in soil functioning, because we know that soil diversity is correlated with soil health. There are further likely implications for plants as tropical rainforests include associations and symbioses between microbes in the soil and the vegetation. “These links are highly specific - so changes in the make-up of the microbes in warming soils are likely to affect the associations,…
KIGALI, Rwanda (PAMACC News) - The 2022 Africa Agriculture Status Report (AASR22) has been launched alongside the Africa Geeen Revolution Forum (AGRF) in Rwanda, with a call for African governments to lead and coordinate domestic and external efforts to urgently and holistically tackle food insecurity in the continent. The Africa Agriculture Status Report is an annual publication by AGRA, focusing on emerging issues in Africa. Last year, the 2021 AASR Report focused on the resilience of Africa’s food systems, and why ensuring this resilience is critical. The 2022 report, which highlights the development in agricultural transformation in Africa and the way forward is themed “Accelerating African Food Systems Transformation”. It emphasises the urgent need for inclusive, equitable, sustainable and resilient growth in the agricultural sector, while acknowledging intensification of major drivers of recent food insecurity trends in Africa. It recognises the need to accelerate action. Fundamentally, the 2022 report calls for good leadership and coordination, a need to build capacity and capabilities to address food systems, but most importantly the mobilisation of financing from both the public and private sector. The publication focuses on practical pathways to meet these ends. The report highlights six megatrends shaping the development of agrifood systems in Africa that warrant greater attention by stakeholders. It examines the role of leadership in harnessing collective effort, shared responsibility, greater stakeholder engagement, as well as rallying political will, to achieve food systems transformation in Africa. Further, it presents the investment gap required to trigger and/or sustain Africa’s agro-food transformation reflecting on the requisite human, institutional and systemic capacities and capabilities that are required to achieve agro-food system transformation at scale. And, it recommends priorities for African national governments, development partners and the private sector. The report states that “Accelerating agro-food transformation in a sustainable and inclusive way is an extremely complex task. It requires an integrated approach, which draws heavily on the cooperation of system actors, with African governments driving the process that facilitates the required change,” adding that addressing the vulnerability of Africa’s food systems requires political will and leadership. AGRA’s President, Dr Agnes Kalibata noted that a combination of the after-effects of the pandemic and the Ukraine conflict have led to elevation of food prices thus exacerbating food insecurity in the continent. “The AASR22 reflects on key action areas required to tackle the most urgent and important areas in response to these challenges. There is urgent need to repurpose food policies to address the emerging challenges affecting conditions, outcomes and behaviour of our food systems, without compromising the economic, social and environmental fundamentals,” Dr Kalibata added. The AASR22 challenges African governments to assume a leadership role in food system transformation as a national security, poverty alleviation and rural development agenda that cuts across various institutions, while reducing reliance on donors who have been directing flows of international assistance. It calls for locally led integrated action that brings together key sectors of the economy that are central to food systems, including health, environment, agriculture and education, and…
KIGALI, Rwanda (PAMACC News) - Food and agriculture leaders from across Africa are gathered in Rwanda from September 06, to advance action for food systems transformation on the continent. The two-day forum themed Collaborative Leadership: Advancing African Food Systems, is organised by the Centre for African Leaders in Agriculture (CALA), an AGRA-led initiative, and will see over 200 of Africa’s leading and emerging agriculture leaders convene for a series of workshops, panel discussions and networking sessions designed to provoke collaborative action towards the most pressing food system issues facing the continent today. In attendance will be two cohorts of 160 participants from CALA’s Advanced Leadership Programme drawn from 8 countries - Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda. The programme supports food security champions and leaders to achieve progress in implementing national agricultural transformation and environmental sustainability interventions. The forum is the first in-person gathering of CALA’s participants in the Centre’s young history. The second cohort of 80 food systems leaders will be unveiled officially. During the event the delegates will issue a call to action for greater collaboration among sector leaders on advancing African food systems. Among the key speakers were H.E. Hailemariam Dessalegn, AGRA Board Chair and former Prime Minister for Ethiopia, and Dr. Agnes Kalibata, President of AGRA. “Realising the collective expertise and energy of these distinguished leaders from AGRA’s Centre for African Leaders in Agriculture gathered here today, this is really our moment to seize to work together towards deeper integration of our food systems, and to take critical steps towards achieving zero hunger”, said H.E. Hailemariam Dessalegn. Selected from over 1,000 applicants, the 80 new CALA delegates represent the continent’s most dynamic leaders in agriculture, with 45% of them drawn from government agencies across the eight countries, 26% from the private sector and 29% from civil society. “These illustrious CALA cohorts of 160 leaders from eight countries have distinguished themselves in delivering on food systems transformation priorities across government, private sector and civil society. In the aftermath of COVID-19, we have a unique opportunity to re-imagine and build more resilient food systems. We look forward to the rest of this decade of action working with you all to meet our sector priorities with the eight harvests we now have left,” said Dr. Kalibata. Designed for rising stars and established executives from across Africa’s agriculture sector in government, the private sector and civil society, CALA’s Advanced Leadership Programme is the continent’s premier leadership programme tailored to support leaders to advance sustainable agriculture sector priorities. The highly competitive programme is a 16-month learning journey that emphasises collaborative and practical experience and is focused on advancing leaders’ professional skills as they contribute to delivery of flagship programmes on food systems transformation. An AGRA-led initiative, CALA is delivered in collaboration with implementing partners, including the African Management Institute (AMI), CALA’s lead implementation and learning partner, and USAID’s Policy LINK. Policy LINK has led the design and rollout of the leadership programme’s coaching component. “As a leader, being…
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