By Ruvimbo Chatyoka
GOVERNMENT has coopted youths in reviewing its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), which aim to reduce energy-related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per capita, by 33 percent (%), below the projected Business-As-Usual (BAU) scenario by 2030, with a view of coming up with a position paper on NDCs processes and recommendations for consideration.
The immediate process of revising the NDCs provides an opportunity to support collaboration amongst government agencies and increase mutual understanding amongst government, industry and the community for top-priority actions, as well as, the roles and responsibilities of different agencies. This will include awareness of additional finance requirements to implement achievable, cost-effective, but socially inclusive emissions reductions across various sectors of the economy
“The Government has elaborated a National Climate Change Response Strategy and a National Climate Policy to guide climate change work in the country. Various other Policies have been developed and have climate change considerations such as the Renewable Energy Policy, Biofuels Policy and the Industrial Development Policy,” Director for Climate Management Department in the Ministry of Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry, Washington Zhakata has said.
Zhakata alluded that, for the country to achieve its NDCs targets, it requires measures, which ensure that all different population groups can adapt to climate change, strengthen their resilience, and help reduce emissions of GHG. Zimbabwe’s Low Emission Development Strategy (LEDS) 2020-2050, sets the course for reducing emissions, while at the same time ensuring sustainable economic development for the country.
In addition, he emphasized that it is based on the government’s economic planning up to 2050 and covers mitigation measures in all Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) sectors, which are Energy; Industrial Processes and Product Use (IPPU); Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use (AFOLU); and, Waste.
Said Zhakata, “Climate change is now inevitable, action must be taken that help our people to adapt and become more resilient. The COVID- 19 pandemic offers us a unique opportunity to rebuild our economy in a green and sustainable way. The current situation calls upon the nation to focus on low carbon climate-resilient development pathways which can bring multiple wins for society, economy and the environment.”
However, in an interview with The BusinessConnect, several youths highlighted issues that are hindering the country to reduce emissions by 2030.
Shamiso Winner Mupara from the Environmental Buddies Zimbabwe said, “A lack of funding to implement tree planting activities in communities is one major factor that is hindering the reduction of emissions and also, a lack of political buy-in on implementation of policies and Acts by relevant authorities, and moreover, more coal is being mined, yet we keep saying we need to go green or move to cleaner energy, yet more coal plants continue to be commissioned”.
GIS expert, Edmore Nyamungadza from the Forestry Commission highlighted that ignorance from the community in making sure that available wetlands in their respective area or Ward need to be protected and safeguarded, and besides the issue of wetlands, people in rural areas are still reluctant to adhere to the Forestry Act, which prohibits cutting down of trees and cutting down of trees means removal of sinks responsible for segmentation of emitted GHGs”.
By Ruvimbo Chatyoka