Government Commits To Tackle Climate Change
The government of South Sudan has committed to tackle negative effects of climate change, which causes food insecurity and unsustainable livelihoods.
Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, and Acting Minister of Environment and Forestry, Hon. Onyoti Adigo Nyikwec speaks during the opening ceremony of the Climate Change, Food Insecurity and Resilient Livelihoods Conference [
By Jale Richard
JUBA, 30 June 2017 [Gurtong]-This comes after a high level delegation of policy makers, political leaders, and development partners held a two-day interactive conference in Juba, to generate ideas and concrete action points to protect and help vulnerable communities to adapt against the negative effects of climate change.
“South Sudan should approach climate change as an opportunity to move towards a green growth pathway that is powered by clean energy and sustainable management of natural resources,” said Taban Deng Gai, First Vice President and guest of honour.
“I am happy to announce that climate change adaptation responses will be an integral part of the national development strategy which is underway and will be mainstreamed across the different sectors.”
According to the Climate Change Vulnerability Index 2017, South Sudan is ranked the fifth worst performing countries in the world. In the past four decades, South Sudan has witnessed high levels of temperature increase-1.3 degree Celsius, two and a half times higher than the global averages.
Summer rainfalls have decreased by 10 to 20% in South Sudan. “If the trend continues, the area receiving over 500mm of rainfall necessary to sustain agricultural livelihoods will contract by 30% of what it was during 1960-1990,” warned UNDP’s senior programs adviser Biplove Chaudhary.
The Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Hon. Onyoti Adigo Nyikwec, also the Acting Minister of Environment and Forestry, further emphasized the government’s commitment to acting quickly to address the needs of communities.
“Even as South Sudan has constrained fiscal space, my Ministry is committing to prioritize climate change interventions in our budgets. Needless to say, the support of the international development partners will be vital to complement national efforts and I look forward to working closely with all of you as the country moves towards robust mechanisms to boost domestic preparedness on climate change,” said Hon. Nyikwec.
The Minister also emphasized the need for inclusion and engagement of young people into the climate change adaptation agenda, particularly through introducing climate change education into school curriculums.
For Joseph Africano Bartel the Undersecretary Ministry of Environment and Forestry, “We need to act now to save the lives of the people who are already feeling the impact of climate change in their daily lives,”
“South Sudan doesn't only need humanitarian aid, we need to build the resilience of our communities so that they have the capacity to produce food and provide for our people, and ultimately take this country to the next level of prosperity.”
“There is no time to lose. We need to act and act now, on climate change adaptation in South Sudan,” said UNDP Senior Deputy Country Director Mr. Jean-Luc Stalon.
“Innovative renewable energy solutions need urgent attention for adaptation. Infrastructure and access to electricity are critical not simply for the smooth running of the health and education facilities but also for diversifying livelihoods, especially those of women and youth. However, in most parts of the country, these basic needs are not being met, communities are being deprived of basic services and the productive potential of the country is not being realized,” continued Mr. Stalon.
The conference was organized by UNDP and the Ministry of Environment and Forestry.