There’s a Swahili saying used in Africa that goes something like this ” Mtaka cha mvunguni sharti ainame”, translated as “if you need something under the bed you may need to bend!
The COP 22 conference in Marrakesh has just ended, these meetings have become important and critical in the follow-up of climate adaptation and management techniques that government are pursuing. This is also done to keep at par with current research with regards to the climate systems of wich we are all part of. Marrakesh is a follow up on the COP 21 Paris conference Pre-deliberations where I presented my research on the rethinking of coastal city planning and design due to the threat of climate change. The global climate change phenomena have in the recent past been associated with several adverse impacts.
However, there are some of us who believe climate change is a fabrication to scare the general populace from enjoying the natural resources at their disposal. What makes the world assume that the phenomena are a hoax, is our inherent dependence on natural resources including coal and gas and the human effect that has been proven to cause adverse environmental consequences. Of course some of the top politicians who deny its existence include the newly elected President of the United States, whose own properties next to a beautiful coastline are being admired by the advancing oceans and in some areas those properties will be flooded up to 210 days in a year, in the next 30 years.
Such beautiful real estate pieces are a real deal anywhere in the world as the general populace struggles to own a part of the beach or a coastline. However, all over the world, researchers are of the opinion that climate change and coastal cities are a real worry that individual investors and the related governments especially the developing worlds need to protect this resources from the advancing oceans. What would be the need of having an exclusive beautiful coastal home that your son who is eight may not enjoy it from the age of thirty years and above?
Coming back to East Africa, my home a beautiful home, coastal areas of Mombasa, Lamu and Zanzibar are a real attraction with definite architecture and beautiful natural environment to see. Watamu Mombasa Malindi and Lamu are the holiday destinations in Kenya with current Kenyans owning properties and investments in theses areas before I proceeded further the threat of advancing oceans is a real one in the range of 50% to 56% of properties in these regions being hurt. But again who then should be working towards reducing the threat.
As earlier alluded in my posts climate change and global carbon dioxide emissions is an issue that traverses across states and countries and a coalesced approach towards the reduction of emission’s is actually the best way forward, but how do you do that when the global polluters are not willing to pull all their forces together. We have always sung and compelled to remind ourselves as Africa, that our sustainability and the ability to protect our populace will largely depend on us. Sound initiatives meant for the management of our resources are a real leap in the right direction. These actions include but not limited to the prudent management of our carbon sinks which include forests and peat/swamp lands, and the need to combine development and resource management consciousness. As earlier mentioned, they will go a long way in securing the future of our disadvantaged economies, our help, unfortunately, will not come from the West, North or South.
The need to be prudent in the management of resources is important in cushioning the climate change impacts around Africa, in many areas especially food security, property protection from flash flooding and protection of coastal regions. Waiting for other countries to keep their part of the deal in climate protection may not be forthcoming bearing in mind that some of the sceptics are some of the leaders of countries that are the greatest polluters.
Therefore, as we plan to develop our nations and improve infrastructure, provide more excellent and reliable energy sources, create up to date transport systems- a good example being SGR and LAPPSET in Kenya. It’s imperative that the natural systems that balance out our human systems, cities and food production and security need to be protected or at least effectively managed. Otherwise, we risk losing some of the systems that support African economies, examples being agriculture, forestry and tourism.