Dar es Salaam, July 13th 2016. Former President Jakaya Kikwete has called upon government, researchers, policy makers, business leaders, civil society and environment stakeholders to invest in research in order to come up with suitable and customized policies to effectively combat Climate Change in Africa.

Former President Kikwete made these remarks while officiating the 3rd Global Climate Policy Conference taking place in Dar es Salaam, co-organized by the Institute of African Leadership for Sustainable Development (UONGOZI Institute) and Climate Strategies.

The dialogue aims on finding best ways possible to implement the Paris Agreement of December 2015 on Climate Change. The theme for the two-day conference is “Implementing the Paris Agreement – New Research Solutions for Developing Countries.”

“Climate Change is not simply a reality, but the reality in the world we live in today. Tackling Climate Change will therefore require new ways of thinking and new partnerships across sectors, across nations, across habitats and across societies,” said former President Kikwete.

“This is why research has a critical role to play so that we may develop evidenced-based policies to adapt to, mitigate against, and wherever possible counter Climate Change. Research therefore must inform what needs to be done, how it can be done, and why it must be done, only then will policy be appropriately informed,” he said.

He continued, “As a result, research must also be practical and actionable in our contexts, suited to our values and to our circumstances here in Africa, but keeping the rest of the world in mind.”

Developing regions like Africa, need development ‘model’ that would accelerate poverty alleviation and deliver prosperity to our societies. We must develop new models and approaches to delivering sustainable development that are suited to our circumstances.

Meanwhile, the Minister of State for Environment and Union Affairs Hon. January Makamba said that the government has taken steps to ratify the Paris Agreement, where Tanzania was among the 175 parties who signed the Agreement during the 2016 Opening for Signature of the Paris Agreement, held at United Nations Headquarters in New York on 22 April.

We have already developed a roadmap on ratification process. At the National level, we recently established the National Carbon Monitoring Centre at Sokoine University of Agriculture, first and only Carbon monitoring Centre in Eastern Africa,” said Minister Makamba.

“This center will help the country to quantify and understand the carbon potential of this country in terms of sequestration in the forestry sector and emission reduction or avoidance in other sectors to be able to contribute to the objectives of the Paris agreement and participate effectively in carbon trade,” he elaborated.

He continued, “We have also established a National capacity building programme with the support of the Green Climate Fund for addressing all the readiness challenges to be able to access substantive financial resources from this important Green Climate Fund.  In this context already three projects worthy over USD 200 million have been submitted to the GCF for funding consideration this year.”

The two-day Global Climate Policy Conference is the 3rd conference of its kind but the first time that it is being hosted in Africa, after prior conferences in London, UK in 2014 and New Delhi, India in 2015. The conference has gathered 80 research, policy-makers, and environment stakeholders from the government, business and civil society gathered from 10 countries in and outside of Africa.