September 9, 2021
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Africa’s booming youth population provides the continent with the opportunity to engage more youths with green jobs through ambitious climate action.

Gboyega Olorunfemi, Principal Consultant, Enviromax Global Resources Limited, said this at webinar organised by The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Africa Regional Collaboration Centres in Kampala, Uganda and Lomé, Togo, with the theme “Youth Engagement in the UNFCCC Process and More Ambitious Climate Action.”

Olorunfemi speaking as a panelist at the recent webinar said, “The increasing population growth in Africa is a great potential for development. However, it also poses the risk of deforestation, land use challenges, desertification, soil depletion and erosion.”

While speaking, he noted that to achieve effective youth participation in climate action, policy recommendation must be actionable with timeline and responsible actors must be stated.

“The UNFCCC should work with African Union Youth Forum to set up open data source, conduct gap and need assessment centred on youth for climate action.

“The AU must show clarity of ambition in its pursuit of global climate change action and invest more in nature based innovation to engage with a blend of traditional practices, engaging native intelligence with modern tools to deliver desired results and approach for climate action through circular economy and natural capital accounting,” he said.

Olorunfemi added that young people should be engaged to develop a pan-African adaptation plan from local level, to sub-national that will feed into the regional plan.

“There has been enough talk with the youths, enough of calling them to webinars. It’s time to empower youths the more to start taking ambitious climate actions, engage them more at the execution/implementation stage of climate related projects,” he concluded.

The panel sessions were hosted by Suri Mues, Regional Lead, UNFCCC, Kampala and Nafisatou Cisse, Regional Lead, UNFCCC, Lome.

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