New $70m climate change study in Africa

Cape Town - The UK’s department for International development and Canada’s international development research centre have jointly announced a partnership to research initiatives in tackling climate change in Africa and Asia.

According to the International Development ResearchCentre (IDRC) the initiative is a $70m research programme that will be conducted over 7 years.

This work according to the collaborative adaptation research initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA) will utilise fresh perspectives in understanding climate change in high risk areas in Africa and Asia.

CARIAA will primarily focus on three “hot spots”, within Africa and South and Central Asia. This will mostly be semi-arid regions, African and South Asian deltas and the Himalayan River Basins. The programme additionally will contribute to already existing effective policies in those areas.

This programme will examine specific regions and countries that would be hot spots for research in terms of climate change.

CARIAA specifically in Africa will address two hotspots: semi-arid regions in the East, West, and Southern Africa and the Volta and Nile river Deltas

This research will be used to help law makers create policy dedicated towards addressing climate change. Moreover the research will allow economic ministers and business leaders to create policies that would additionally reduce poverty according to IDRC president Jean Lebel.

The research aims as well to examine how big business will adapt to climate change legislation and how governments can support this initiative.

In building a defence against extreme weather the research will provide evidence to developing nations on what initiatives will work and what will fail.

A pivotal part of this programme will be working with regional and local bodies so as to bridge research with policy.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) releases a report this month that argues the world’s driest regions will become even more arid and dry due to warming climates.

These areas that already face harsh climates will face depleting water reserves and extremely high temperatures.

This will directly impact those who depend on natural resources for their livelihoods.

The report goes on to state that by 2050 average temperatures across Africa could exceed our current hottest temperatures on record. When this happens crops will fail and water will become scarce.

Coastal regions such as the Nile Delta will also be affected. These areas are vulnerable to rises in sea level and soil salinisation. Consequently by 2050 1.3 million could be displaced.

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