Climate Change in Africa

ISEES conduct research into sustainable solutions and implement projects to reduce the impact of climate change on the local economy in Ghana and Africa.

Thematic areas include

1. climate Smart Agricultural Technologies

2. Climate change adaptation through the use of renewable energy interventions

3. Reducing carbon emmissions through increased access to improved, clean and efficient cookstoves through market based approaches

4. Participate in climate change policy dialogue and supporting local communities, district assemblies and african countries to develop and implement action plans on reducing the impact of climate change on the economy

 

 

Context

The impact of climate change is now more than ever before being felt. There is clear evidence that the potential negative impacts of climate change are immense, and Ghana is particularly vulnerable due to its relatively low capacity to undertake adaptive measures to address environmental problems and the socio-economic costs of climate change (EPA, 2000). Studies by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have revealed that all the major sectors of the Ghanaian economy (including the energy sector) are very sensitive to climate change and variability.

Although climate change presents challenges to achieving sustainable development, there are also opportunities for social and economic development. Addressing sustainable energy access acceleration issues in Ghana by incorporating climate change and variability could have the following advantages:  Reduction of GHG emissions through efficient and effective energy production, distribution and consumption technologies and practices;  Participation of broader/wider stakeholders including the private sector and gender due to the multi-sectoral nature of climate change; and 

Building effective adaptive capacities of vulnerable groups, individuals, institutions and resilient energy infrastructure to withstand the impacts of climate change and variability. For instance, in agricultural areas, particularly in the central and northern regions of the country, climate change has contributed to the deterioration of rural livelihoods, reflected in declining incomes, malnutrition and hunger. The flooding of coastal areas, which are already undergoing erosion, and low operating water levels of the only hydro-generating dam in the country are further problems.

The vulnerability of people to daily shocks and stresses is intrinsically tied to the human adaptive capacity — and strategies created — to respond to floods, high temperatures, coastal erosion, rises in the sea level, and other climate-related events. Climate change is likely to exacerbate these shocks and stresses, particularly among the poorest and most vulnerable populations and, therefore, may inhibit the attainment of the MDGs. Strategic actions are being pursued in Ghana towards the abatement of climate change, in a collaborative effort between the Ministry of Energy, the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology and the Environmental Protection Agency, with the key objectives to:

1. Promote the use of environmentally friendly energy supply sources such as renewable energy (solar, wind, waste) in the energy supply mix of the country;

2. Encourage a shift from oil to gas wherever gas is a technically feasible alternative;

3. Promote the use of improved woodfuel stoves for cooking in households and other commercial activities;

4. Support and actively participate in international efforts and cooperate with international organisations that seek to ensure sustainable delivery of energy to mitigate negative environmental impacts and climate change;

5. Encourage and enable all relevant entities engaged in activities in the energy sector to explore and access international environmental financial mechanisms and markets to overcome investment, technology and other relevant barriers;

6. Ensure effective disposal of all hazardous substances and materials associated with the production, transportation and use of energy; and

7. Facilitate environmental protection awareness programmes.