EGYPT: Egypt’s ambitious efforts to combat climate change as it leads the rest of Africa took centre stage last month when the country hosted the fourth World Youth Forum in Sharm El-Sheikh, South Sinai.
During the main event, titled ‘From Glasgow to Sharm El Sheikh: Combating Climate Change,’ Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly explained the projects that the country was working on to combat climate change and keep global temperatures to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
Egyptian Prime Minister plans to combat climate chnage
To set the tone, Madbouly discussed the extent to which climate change has devastated the environment and, as a result, economies.
“During my 10-second speech at the session, more than 10,000 metric tons of greenhouse gases were released into the atmosphere, which are equivalent to the weight of 170,000 people,” the PM said.
The Prime Minister went on to say that climate change has unquestionably become the world’s most pressing issue at all levels and that the entire world must deal with it decisively and swiftly in order to overcome it in the coming years.
Madbouly also stated that the issue of climate change, which the world is currently dealing with, should have been taken seriously when experts warned of its dangers 15 to 20 years ago.
“At that time, many considered such warnings as speculative or pessimistic, while the optimists thought that the effects of climate change would not be an issue during their lifetimes”, he said.
As it warms itself up for the 27th conference of party countries to climate change pact, Egypt has set out steps to ensure that it is a leader in Africa in climate action and mitigation.
Malboudy also insisted that Egypt is one of the countries most vulnerable to the negative effects of climate change, even though the country plays a minor role in driving it.
While confirming that Egypt has the newest and renewable energy resources, the PM stated that the country will soon be among the five largest producers of renewable energy in the Middle East and Africa.
He also delved into a project to develop lakes in Egypt which, for hundreds of years, had been neglected, therefore causing them to shrink in size. He mentioned his government’s plan to revamp Lake Manzala, a project that would cost $2 billion, and also the Benban Solar Park, which is one of the world’s best climate change mitigation projects.
Malboudy also reviewed yet another project to deliver natural gas to all homes across the nation, replacing the traditional energy that Egyptians are currently using.
“During the 2022 UN Climate Change Conference, more commonly referred to as COP27, which will be held at the end of this year in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt will focus on the impact of climate change on the African continent,” the PM said.
He also added that Egypt aims to develop its research centers, give out specialized awards for green projects, and as well largely support the role that the youth play in facing climate change.
The PM stressed that change comes from unconventional ideas and that his country always encourages its youth to develop and implement innovative solutions that they might have.
The session was also attended by a host of speakers, topped by the Director of Environment and Sustainable Development at the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mohamed Nasr, Strategic Advisor on Climate Change and Head of the Climate Promise at the UNDP Cassie Flynn, Director of Climate Change and Environment at the C12 Consultants Akeel Hajat, and CEO and Co-Founder of Hawa Dawa Karim Tarraf.
Also taking part in the session as speakers, via the forum’s interactive platform, were First US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate and former secretary of state John Kerry, the COP26 UK government’s Envoy John Murton, the Global Director Child Poverty, Climate and Urban at Save the Children International Yolande Wright, Executive Director of the United N Environment Program Inger Andersen, the ICRC’s Near and Middle East Regional Director Fabrizio Carboni, and CNN Chief Climate Correspondent Bill Weir.