The Post (Buea), Cameroon
By Leocadia Bongben
The 2007/2008 World Human Development Report published by the United Nations Development Programme, UNDP, indicates that humanity has less than a decade to change course or face dangerous climate change.
The report published under the theme, "Fighting Change: Human Solidarity in a Divided World" was launched November 27 by the Minister of the Economy and Planification and Regional Development, Louis Paul Motaze, and the Interim UNDP Resident Representative, Dede Ekoue, at the Yaounde Mont Febe Hotel.
The report analyses the 21st Century climate challenges, focuses on the climate shocks: risks and vulnerability in an unequal world, it equally provides strategies for mitigation to avoid dangerous climate change and calls for national action and international cooperation in order to adapt to the inevitable.
Humanity is warned against reaching the threshold of dangerous climate change which is an increase of two degrees Celsius, a point at which rapid reversal of human development and a drift towards irreversible ecological damage would become difficult to avoid.
In order to overcome the challenge of dangerous climate change, the report urges for the development of a multilateral approach within the context of the post-Koyto 2012 Protocol, put in place viable political strategies on the budget of reducing carbon and the search alternatives, reinforce international cooperation, put climate change at the centre of the post-Kyoto accord and international partnerships for poverty reduction.
African governments are urged to integrate poverty reduction strategies in planning, specifically in developing meteorological surveillance network to put information on the evolution of the climate in Africa at the disposal of farmers, invest in water storage installations, ameliorate national social insurance programmes for the protection of farmers and the poor in rural areas against devastating catastrophic climate, and equally invest in early warning systems.
Appreciating the report, Dede Ekoue cautioned that the report is advocacy tools, stating that the analyses, originality and solutions proposed are presented in strict objectivity.
She stated that the report proposes the classification of countries on the bases of human development indicators in which Cameroon is classified 144 out of 177 countries with an indicator of 0,532 remaining sensible in line with its anterior performance.
The UNDP official reiterated the need to take advantage of the report and exhorted the government to ameliorate the living conditions of the population with the attainment of the HIPC completion point.
On his part, Motaze lamented the paradox of rich countries producing huge gas emissions with poor countries the most vulnerable, though they produce the least emissions.
He said the consequences of climate change are evident in Lake Chad which has seen it surface area reduced by about 90 percent.
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