Africa doesn’t need fossil fuels to reach its development. As the least responsible, but yet most vulnerable to climate change, Africa must follow upon the Climate Vulnerable Forum pledge made by 16 African governments in November 2016 to accelerate the transition towards an economy powered by 100% renewables.
Our fight against fossil fuels is a pathway to a united African continent that seeks solutions beyond the tried and tested that’s proven to be destructive. The time for clean energy is now.
The Afrika Vuka day of action is taking place on 25 May. It aims to support everyone getting active to stop climate change. There are Fridays for Future activities and school strikes planned for this day too.
Across the globe, climate change is accelerating at a tremendous pace. But so is the action people are taking to create a better future, free from fossil fuels. From the increasing number of towns and countries declaring a climate emergency to the tremendous successes of the divestment movement in withdrawing the social license of the fossil fuel industry.
A long time coming
Suddenly, everyone is talking climate; it’s a change that has been a long time coming and we are still just in time to make a difference. But to make that difference, every single one of us needs to get on board in whatever way we can.
We are already seeing unprecedented climate impacts unfold across our continent. Last month, Mozambique was hit with a second cyclone in just over a month since Cyclone Idai made landfall. Cyclone Kenneth made landfall in the north of the country, where there is no previous record of hurricane-force systems ever hitting the region so far north before.
These unfolding tragedies point to the bigger crisis that humanity is faced with.
In October last year, a report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) laid bare the undeniable truth. That we need to take urgent and rapid steps to keep to a 1.5 degree temperature rise. This report could arguably be seen as the catalyst for this current “climate moment” reflecting a new level of urgency.
If we don’t act now, our dry regions would be much more likely to experience severe drought, and areas prone to heat waves or intense hurricanes would get more of those disasters, too. This is an emergency and it’s one that we all need to engage with.
Right now our collective futures depends on us being able to seize this moment and work together to push back against the fossil fuel industry fuelling the climate crisis and for long-lasting and meaningful change.