Monday, December 31, 2012

African scientists call for climate change evidence

Emeka Johnkingsley in African scientists urgently need to build more evidence on the impact of climate change on the continent, a conference has heard. A joint statement issued at the eighth Annual Meeting of African Science Academies last month (12–14November) in Nigeria, notes that Africa lacks much home-grown data about the impacts of extreme weather events and sea level rise.

It says: "Actions required of science include contributions to the development of risk assessments and mapping for various anticipated climate-related extreme events. The refinement of modelling techniques, taking account also of natural systems and traditional knowledge, in developing early warning systems contributes to strengthen risk reduction.”

Nigeria's president, Goodluck Jonathan, launched the statement, entitled 'Climate change in Africa: using science to reduce climate risks', and stressed that climate change information is needed for planning. "We believe that strong evidence-based knowledge on climate change will help policymakers take decisions and actions required to reduce climate risks in Africa," he said.

Roseanne Diab, executive officer of the Academy of Science of South Africa, toldSciDev.Net that a study on the impact of climate change on Africa would take at least two years and should be coordinated by the Network of African Science Academies (NASAC)….

Touaregs in Mali, shot by Alfred Weidinger, Wikimedia Commons via Flickr, under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

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