Climate finance has failed Africa. African countries receive a grossly insufficient amount of climate finance, falling far short of what they require. For the period 2020-2030, the average annual climate funding needs for Africa are estimated at around $33.5b for adaptation, $72b for mitigation, and $36.5b for loss and damage, totaling $142b. However, annual climate flows to Africa currently stand at only $30b. If the same level of climate funding persists throughout the period 2020-2030, there will be an annual shortfall of $112b – amounting to a total climate finance gap of $1.1tn. At COP26, the advanced countries promised to double global adaptation funding by 2025, which would amount to an additional $40b per year for Africa. However, Africa would still face a total shortfall of at least $820m for the decade.
Six Priorities for Africa at COP27
Three immediate actions:
Multilateral agencies and development finance institutions should:
- Deliver technical assistance to African countries and streamline climate fund processes to improve access to already available climate finance.
- Improve capacity building and technology transfers to enhance the transition to low-carbon economies and help access Africa’s huge carbon stocks for job creation and development.
- Invest in two or three renewable energy manufacturing centers in Africa to produce products such as solar panels and batteries for the African market.
Three new long-term targets and goals:
- To close the climate finance gap, rich countries need to make a strong commitment to $1.3tn in climate funding for Africa for the period 2020-2030 to cover the costs of climate adaptation, mitigation, and loss and damage.
- Africa’s long-term energy transition to net zero has to include natural gas as a transition fuel, and climate funding should be made available for natural gas development projects.
- The global financial architecture has to be reformed to better serve developing countries and address the climate crisis. More innovative instruments such as green bonds, green loans, debt-for-climate swaps, and climate-linked debt should be made available; unused Special Drawing Rights should be reallocated for climate finance, and climate funding processes need to be streamlined and made more transparent.