The 22nd Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP22) will kick off on Monday at Marrakech, Morocco. The climate change conference that will run until 18th of November comes shortly after the coming to effect of the Paris Agreement (on November, 4th) that was brokered during the 21st COP held last year in Paris, France.
In Paris, nations came up with an ambitious plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions, prevent global temperature increase, enhance adaptation to the impacts of climate change and commit climate finance to assist poor and vulnerable countries with mitigation and adaptation measures.
In Marrakech, the world is gathering to operationalize or provide a roadmap for implementation of the Paris vision. As a result, the COP 22 is christened ‘action COP’.
Kenya is one of the affected countries set to benefit when– or if – Paris Agreement comes to fruition. The agreement will come into effect in 2020.
The country is already experiencing the consequences of climate change. This year alone, the country has been hit by the worst drought in recent history causing over 1.3 million across the country to face starvation.
The prolonged drought has also led to loss of crops and livestock on massive scale, water scarcity, tension between farmers, private ranchers, conservancy owners and pastoralists in arid and semi-arid areas, increased conflicts between humans and wildlife, loss of livelihoods and migrations of populations in affected areas.
Kenya’s agriculture and tourism dependent economy is already feeling the shockwaves of climate change. The National Drought Management Authority warned the general public to prepare for tough times ahead.
Though Kenya has made significant steps in the fight against climate change, a lot of effort is still needed to mitigate the causes and adapt to the impacts of climate change.
To abate greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2030 and ensure enhanced resilience to climate change towards the attainment of Vision 2030, Kenya needs international support in the form of finance, investment, technology and capacity building.
Kenya being a signatory to the UNFCCC will participate in the conference. Kenya has also signed and ratified the famous Paris Agreement.
The conference that will attract representatives from 197 countries will be led by Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary UNFCCC and H.E. Mr. Salaheddine Mezouar, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of the Kingdom of Morocco and President-Designate of conference.
Hopefully, COP 22 will provide answers to Kenya’s needs.