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The Environment, Sustainability and COP27

In early November, world leaders will gather in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, for the annual climate summit, COP 27. Accelerated innovation is vital to achieve the meeting’s goals, yet past COPs have frequently failed to deliver it. Will this year be different? How can innovation be put more firmly in its rightful place at the centre of the global climate discourse? More importantly, how can the discourse lead to meaningful results that spur rapid development and deployment of climate solutions worldwide? And, most importantly, where does Africa fit in the process, given that the environmental damage is almost entirely due to emissions and industrial waste from North America, Europe and Asia?

Meanwhile, energy and financial experts are worried about sustainable financing for Africa, especially in the energy sector, stressing that Africa risks a yearly $415bn economic loss due to climate change by 2030 if the infrastructure is not improved. While the experts on one hand said Africa needs over $23bn to upgrade existing refineries on the continent to produce cleaner fuels and displace charcoal with modern fuels, they insisted that without significant improvements in infrastructure resilience, yearly economic losses from natural disasters’ damage to urban infrastructure alone would increase from $300bn currently to $415bn by 2030.

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