Panellists discuss climate change impacts

Countries across the world strive for resilience and sustainable development, and want to know how to address climate impacts and allocate their efforts in ways that safeguard their quest for climate-resilient sustainable development

Risk practitioners and political decision-makers need to consider the expected changes in climatic and social risk factors while trying to assess the level of risk at any particular point of time in future. In this regard, demographic change is one of the core factors shaping future exposure and vulnerability to environmental and climatic hazards.

A High-Level Panel discussion on ‘Demographic Change and Climate Change – the nexus and resilient communities’ was held on Monday, 7th October at the University of Ghana.

The event is part of the 2019 Summer Academy on ‘World Risk Adaptation Futures’ which brought together 30 young and senior professionals, and experts active in the field of Climate Change Adaptation, Disaster Risk Reduction and related fields from across the globe.

The Summer Academy aims to help frame decisions about how to manage climate impacts, vulnerabilities, and risks in ways tailored to the needs of a changing populace.

This Summer Academy is an effort in this direction for a just, sustainable and prosperous world.

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Present at the event was Professor Benjamin Delali Dovie, Senior Research Fellow & Lead Scientist, IDRC-Canada Cities & Climate Change Project, University of Ghana, who disclosed in an interview that there are lots of benefits institutions stand to gain if they take advantage of climate changes.

“There are a lot of benefits we get if our Scientific Institutions are up to work; they can take advantage of increasing temperature, for instance, to develop new varieties that meet the challenge.”

Mr. Dovie further went on to say: “Let’s start looking at the rudiments of climate change and try to see how best we can make some good out of it”. For example, he cited an instance of the White Volta basin which continuously gets flooded: however, the flood brings along with it lots of fertile sediment that serves well the farming community there and is a good replacement for commercial fertiliser, which is costly.

With purposeful and effective ways to bridge knowledge with action, decision-makers will be able to pre-empt human suffering, incorporate climate impacts into planning processes, and put appropriate contingency arrangements into place so vulnerable groups are not left behind.

The United Nations University Institute for Natural Resources in Africa (UNU-INRA) and the United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS), as well as other partners, jointly organised the series of panel discussions.

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UNU-INRA hopes to help bridge the science-policy gap in ways that contribute to achieving climate resilient sustainable development and advancing actionable knowledge.

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