As climate change denier Donald Trump prepares to enter the White House, many wonder what repercussions his climate change policies will have for Africans. Although the continent contributes only 3.8 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, its inhabitants could be among those people hit hardest by climate change. President Barack Obama tackled the challenge in Africa through a variety of projects, but many people think Trump’s insular comments about climate change and energy might lead to policies that could undo President Obama’s hard work.
Obama has attempted to mitigate the effects of climate change through a series of initiatives across Africa: he launched the $7 billion Power Africa project that aims to provide electricity from renewable energy to six nations, which would bring electricity to 230 million people who currently go without. He also launched the $34 million Climate Services for Resilient Development project to help African communities analyze climate data and plan for climate change risks. He also set aside millions of dollars for the U.S. Agency for International Development to help Africans prepare for climate change through funding agricultural systems, urban planning, and water and health services.
Meanwhile Donald Trump has tweeted global warming is an “expensive hoax” and appears to have turned his focus inward to America, saying he’ll promote energy from coal and fracking to create jobs in the United States. Experts warn if he reverses Obama’s policies programs, Trump could leave millions of people in Africa without power and generally more vulnerable to climate change.
In 2015 remarks to African leaders, President Obama said, “I believe Africa’s rise is not just important for Africa, it’s important to the entire world. We will not be able to meet the challenges of our time – from ensuring a strong global economy to facing down violent extremism, to combating climate change, to ending hunger and extreme poverty – without the voices and contributions of one billion Africans.” Let’s hope Donald Trump considers the rest of the world and not just America when he sets climate policies.
Via Quartz Africa