Thursday, October 14, 2010

Africa 'needs practical advice from climate scientists'

Ochieng' Ogodo in Scientists are failing Africa in its attempts to adapt to climate change, a conference was told this week. They spend too much time collecting data and attending conferences, and not enough time providing practical solutions that local people can implement, according to Anthony Nyong, manager of the Compliance and Safeguard Division at the African Development Bank.

For instance the African Centre of Meteorological Application for Development, based in Niger, regularly collects data on drought. Yet the main need of people whose livelihoods have been devastated by droughts is knowledge on how to cope, he said.

Governments and donors were also to blame for failing to integrate climate adaptation plans into development programmes or to take account of local knowledge. They also squander large sums of money on conferences instead of spending it in the field, he told the UNEP-Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) Climate Change Adaptation Collaborative Programme meeting on Monday (11 October).

Nyong urged scientists to redirect some of their energies from collecting data and producing information to transforming this information into knowledge that could help African people cope….

Transsaharan road shot by Radosław Botev, Wikimedia Commons

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